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GLOBAL: Fair Spirits predicts Fair Trade alcohol boom

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The maker of a new Fair Trade rum brand has forecast that all alcohol categories will have products certified by the sustainability initiative within five years.

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Fair Spirits launched Fair Rum at an event in London yesterday, but the company's UK head told just-drinks that it is only a matter of time before other spirits makers follow suit. “It's not good for everybody, but I think in all different kinds of products you can have Fair Trade,” Matthieu Boulas said.

“In the next five years I think there will be one product, and its equivalent that is Fair Trade certified,” Boulas said.

The Fair Trade certification process adds 15% to production costs, Boulas said, but he maintains that it benefits both consumers and the Belize farmers that produce the rum's sugar cane. He also said his company's ethos of putting the interests of the commodity producer ahead of price concerns differs from rivals' practice.

“(Other companies) have a different way of doing things,” Boulas said. “It's more about what the customers are interested in than about the farmers. There are very good firms, but most of the time it's about what they are going to market and who they are going to sell it to.”

Fair Spirits claims that the premium rum, along with its quinoa-based vodka released in 2010, are the first Fair Trade spirits to hit the UK market. 


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