Eco-business / Social Venture

August 27, 2011


Kumamoto Accredited as Asia's First Fair Trade City

Keywords: Civil Society / Local Issues Eco-business / Social Venture Local government NGO / Citizen 

JFS/Kumamoto Accredited as Asia's First Fair Trade City
Copyright Fair Trade Town Japan

Kumamoto City, the capital of Kumamoto Prefecture, was accredited on June 4, 2011, as the First Fair Trade City in Japan and in Asia. It was acknowledged for its commitment to not only reducing poverty and protecting the environment in developing countries, but also promoting revitalization and self-controlled development of local communities within Japan. On that day, Kumamoto joined 11 cities and towns around the globe in declaring the 1000th Fair Trade Town/City of the world.

Kumamoto City was awarded the status by Fair Trade Town Japan (FTTJ), an organization spearheading the Fair Trade Town movements in the country. Candidate cities are assessed based on six accreditation standards specified by FTTJ: "Establishing a Steerimg Body and Expanding Popular Support", "Advancing the Fair Trade Movement and Raising Awareness of Citizens", "Taking Roots in Local Communities", "Contributing to Revitalization of Local Society and Economy", "Making a Wide Variety of Fair Trade Products Available at Local Shops", and "Winning Support and Promotional Efforts from the Local Government vis-a-vis Fair Trade."

The Fair Trade Movement in Kumamoto was launched in 2003 by Fair Trade Kumamoto, a non-governmental organization eheaded by Ms Shoko Akashi who is an unyielding leader-owner of the city's largest fair trade shop. She and her dedicated followers then set up Fair Trade City Steering Committee in August 2009 and have embarked on various campaigns, such as a sign-in, with a view to becoming the first Fair Trade City in Japan. With the passage of a resolution by the City Council and the succeeding pronouncement by the City Mayor in December 2010, both to the effect of supporting fair trade, Kumamoto fulfilled the most difficult standard and thus was finally able to win the accreditation.

Posted: 2011/08/27 06:00:15 AM



Fair Trade Kumamoto Center official website