Redefining a leader to reenergise the movement


The original purpose brand chose 2050 to redefine their leadership to re-energise their movement.

Fairtrade were leaders, but now they were competing with 460 other certifications for the attention of a new generation. Their marketing is reliant on joint promotions with commercial partners. However, their provocative brand idea 'Don’t feed exploitation" was tonally challenging for feel-good consumer brands to work with. Fairtrade were in danger of becoming 'just another certification'.


Think Long 

Fairtrade were born in the 90s and challenged the status quo to get ethical consumerism on the agenda. But this was 2020. All brands now talk social purpose and Fairtrade are now seen as the establishment. To regain relevance, leadership today meant evolving from being the ethical activist fighting the powers that be, to being the ethical cheerleader motivating the many to get more involved.

Active idea

We all think we know Fairtrade. The clue is in the name. But it turns out 'trading fairly' is just the start. The new news is that Fairtrade farmers commit to the strongest social, environmental and sustainable principles. It means paying a fair price enables farmers to plant trees, protect bio-diversity, educate women, farm sustainably and much more. When you multiply this by the 1.7m Fairtrade farmers around the world, they're truly a people-powered engine of change. And hidden away they have countless stories of the incredible impact they make.

These positive stories of change were what Fairtrade needed for their new role. We needed to remind people how Fairtrade represents a choice to change the world for the better. The choices we make every day as a global community shape the world around us. If one brand could own that idea it was Fairtrade. They are the original ethical choice.

The active idea is we can choose the world we all want to see with Fairtrade. ‘Choose the world you want’ became the end line to inspire the mainstream to make a difference they care about.


Reimagine it.

We re-imagined Fairtrade's world by moving from the familiar images of African farmers to which people had become immune, to a world that felt spontaneous and optimistic, one that conveyed a movement changing the world together. Something Fairtrade brand partners could use and get inspired by. 

We designed a bright, bold, vibrant brand identity made up of colourful iconography. Illustrations depicted the product commodities and impacts the movement choose to empower globally.

A new positive photography style was introduced to depict the global impact community. As was the concept of artist co-creation. So that the brand’s art direction reflected a creative, evolving and inclusive movement.

Psych for change.

Fairtrade is a highly collaborative organisation. It was critical to build consensus amongst all stakeholders.

They all had to feel energised by the new brand strategy. We practically empowered them use it by identifying key issues on their audience’s agenda and structuring brand responses to address them.

Through workshops we defined strategic mini briefs with department heads & then developed advertising posters with 50 stakeholders. This process demonstrated how the messaging; new brand tone of voice & personality came to life.

Off the back of this we created an internal brand film to further excite and rally everyone. All this aligned the organisation and developed a new creative energy within the movement


 Winning hearts and minds is the first step to re-energise the movement.

Internal Conviction

·      A renewed sense of energy and purpose​ built around best in class guidelines.

·      Better more positive conversations with all target audiences​

·      A new data base was created to capture the stories of positive impact​

Brand Partners

·      Alignment between Fairtrade’s story and partner’s purpose stories​

·      Big brand co-promotions

·      A new Fairtrade fortnight campaign.

Global Fairtrade Take Up

·      Fairtrade America, Australia, New Zealand and Netherlands are using the narrative.


Fairtrade - Redefining a leader to reenergise the movement

Fairtrade were leaders, but now they were competing with 460 other certifications. They were in danger of becoming 'just another certification'. We gave them a new body language and narrative that brand partners could be proud to co-promote, that the movement would rally behind.

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