Fairtrade Africa (FTA) has asserted at the 28th ARSO General Assembly in Yaoundé, Cameroon, that sustainability in supply chains has come to stay.
FTA programme team leader of cocoa in Ghana, Abubakar Afful, has there launched a spirited call for all stakeholders to support producers to be able to comply with standards.
Afful made the call while contributing to a panel discussion on “the role of sustainability standards and eco-certification to promoting sustainable development and trade.”
He also used the occasion to trumpet the benefits of sustainability schemes, such as Fairtrade, to producers and its contribution to sustainable development.
During the panel discussion, the FTA Cocoa Team Leader highlighted the importance of producer support service in helping producer organizations in complying with the Fairtrade standards.
He also shared lessons around the approach of FT standards-setting where producers and actors are well involved before the standards are approved which makes it more participatory for the producers.
Abubakar Afful also focused on the benefits of certification including the premium, minimum price, support to communities, protection of the environment, stronger organisations etc.
The Fairtrade Africa representative also highlighted the importance of transparency and managing the expectation of producers before certification.
He explained the FT approach in channelling premiums to producers in a transparent manner directly from the buyer to the producer.
The 28th ARSO General Assembly session on sustainability was moderated by the Secretary-General of ARSO, Dr. Hermogen Nsengemana.
The event brought together ARSO members, who are national standards bodies across the continent, and partners of ARSO to discuss key issues on standardization within Africa.
There were four panel discussions including “Impact of harmonized African standards in promoting the pharmaceuticals industry’s growth” and “Using standards to underpin the value addition and access to market to agriculture for agriculture.”
Others were “Food products: Implementing harmonized standards to spur the development of the African automobile industry” and “the role of sustainability standards and eco-certification in promoting sustainable development and trade.”
ARSO, which is the African Organisation for Standardization also as part of activities for the 28th General Assembly swore into office its new president, Professor Alex Dodoo.
Professor Dodoo who is also the Director-General of the Ghana Standards Authority takes over from Charles Booto a Ngon, the Head of Cameroun’s national standards body, would serve a 3-year term ending 2025.
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