Ben & Jerry's

Ben & Jerry's Ben & Jerry's

Many of us may presume that Ben and Jerry's, the ice cream supplier, has been manufacturing Fairtrade products for a number of years.

However the company's Fairtrade vanilla ice cream, which was launched in the UK, Ireland, the Netherlands and Belgium in 2006, was the first product to consist of Fairtrade sugar and vanilla, as well as being the first ice cream in Europe to have the Fairtrade mark. Some of its lines do contain Fairtrade coffee.

Jerry Greenfield, a company founder, stated that it has taken the company such a long time to do so as Fairtrade vanilla has only recently become available in quantities necessary for large-scale manufacture.

Now that the ball is rolling, it is likely that the company is going to add other products. The company has made a long-term pledge to introduce as many ethically sourced ingredients into its range as possible.

Greenfield added that a large part of what Ben and Jerry's do is make ice cream and source ingredients. By ensuring you have Fairtrade ingredients, you pay a premium to those farmers to support themselves. This is a way of attempting to create sustainable farming practices. Hereby you get a tasty ice cream in a way that makes you feel good.

Ben & Jerry's is not a stranger to promoting ethical sourcing, for environmental or social reasons. In America the company works with a bakery which employs those who are "economically disadvantaged".

Ben & Jerry's come on board will undoubtedly help the fair trade movement in the UK. The UK market for Fairtrade products is 200m.

Dorothy MacKenzie, a director at brand agency Dragon, states that consumers view fair trade on an economic, as well as emotional level.