Profairtrade, a Fair Trade Organization

Preda Fair trade is has recently celebrated it forty year (40) anniversary in February 2014

It is a Philippine organization with global reach and provides assistance to small farmers and the victims of human trafficking and wrongful trade in human persons and every kind of exploitation of the people and the environment. Preda Fair trade strives for sustainability is all aspects of its work and the core of its mission is to protect the environment and vulnerable people.

It is certified as a Fair Trade organization by World Fair Trade Organization (WFTO) with the official name PROFAIRTRADE Development Agency SC Ltd. on the WFTO Registration Certificate

Profairtrade,and The Preda Foundation, a Social Development Organization are separate organizations but work closely together one helping the other to benefit the beneficiaries.

The official name of the trading organization is Profairtrade Development Agency SC Ltd.Co. (www.predafairtrade.net) known as Preda Fair Trade based in the Philippines. It is an Fair Trade independent trading organization based on Fair Trade criteria and principles of social and moral responsibility with the main goal of helping small fruit growing farmers, and artisans, craft makers and small independent producers.

It especially helps Indigenous people. It provides fair prices and a premium payment to producers to improve working and living conditions. It funds projects to save abused and exploited children and women and campaigns for trade justice, human rights and the protection of the environment. A percentage of sales go to plant as many as 2000 mango saplings a year. It gives support and training to producers and medical insurance benefits to craft makers.

Working for social justice. Profairtrade spends surplus earnings to promote social justice, combat exploitation, trafficking of persons, child and women abuse and help victims of human rights violations especially minors in prison. It provides safe homes for child victims of sexual abuse and commercial sexual exploitation where they get healing, legal help, therapy, education and reintegration.

The Preda Foundation Inc. and Profairtrade. The projects for children and victims of human rights violations are implemented through a separate charitable organization know as The Preda Foundation Inc. The People’s Recovery Empowerment and Development Assistance (PREDA) Foundation Inc.(www.preda.org) was established in Olongapo City 1974 by Shay Cullen an Irish member of The Missionary Society of St.Columban, based in Hong Kong. Today there are 63 professional paid employees implementing the various projects helping the children.

The Profairtrade also known as Preda Fair Trade, began in 1975 by establishing craft making for young people in conflict with the law who were rescued by Preda social workers from the streets and jails. These children were targets for summary execution by the death squads of the martial law regime of the dictator Ferdinand Marcos. Many young lives were saved by the Preda project.

The assistance to craft makers began in 1975. The project with small farmers, men and women, began 21 years ago, 1993, Profairtrade (Preda Fair Trade) began a partnership with small mango farmers to buy their mangos and other fruit at fair prices and process them into dried mangos and later into Mango puree or mash for the making of fruit drinks. Many small farmers were being exploited by some traders forming a cartel of price-fixing fruit buyers.

Working with cooperatives small farmers. The Profairtrade team established connections with small farmer’s cooperatives, associations and individual growers and formed small groups of farmers from whom Preda bought mangos at a higher price than prevailing prices by adding a premium. The drying and product development was done in partnership with Profood a high quality skilled processing partner which also does the packaging of the dried fruit products for Preda.

The buying of mangos. Prices fluctuate are manipulated by commercial traders with the law of supply and demand Preda pays the best prices prevailing and pays a bonus or dividend per kilo. Profairtrade buys all shapes and sizes of mango fruit at the same higher price without discrimination or selective practice like the practise of some commercial traders. Preda also provides development education and assistance for the indigenous people, helping them with land issues, typhoon disasters, housing projects and gives water and other development projects for the farmers especially the indigenous people.

Marketing. Sales have increased. Thanks to our importing partners, world shops and the Preda Fair Trade customers the sales of the mangos increased greatly and so did the volume of fruit bought from the farmers over the years offering better prices. The buying was done at higher prices and farmers preferred to sell to Preda and Profood until millions of kilos of fresh mangos were being bought by Profairtrade and Profood. This created a challenging competition for the price-fixing cartel.

Preda Fair Trade helped weaken some cartels. The demand for mango products had grown and competition increased. The value of the mango fruit has steadily raised the earnings for all mango growers especially the small growers those only with only a few trees. They are victimized and are cheated by the price-fixing cartels.

Commercial traders select and pay lower. Many commercial buyers do not buy all the mango, they select only the best unblemished fruits called “Table mango”, these are fresh fruit for export to Hong Kong, Japan, China and Singapore by commercial traders. The reject the remainder of the harvest as “rejects” and the farmer earns nothing from the sale of them. His or her only chance to earn from the rejects if he or she he can sell them to the local market. However in harvest time the abundance of fruit drives the value of Mango very low and the farmer get very little of anything at all.

Preda Fair Trade buy all sizes, shapes, colour blemished skin or not and Preda pays the same high price per kilo and pays a bonus also to the farmers based on the volume each will deliver to the processing plant.

A small farmer, is any farmer caring for 50 to 100 trees or less as owner or tenant farmer. Not all the trees blossom every year, perhaps half only will blossom and produce fruit the amount of mangos depends on weather; typhoons, floods, drought and insect infestations, fungus attack that can damage the crop. It must be remembered that there is only one harvest a year or sometimes when naturally grown the trees produce fruit only every two years.

So the small farmers need special assistance from time to time.That is why Preda is introducing new assistance by spending and donating coffee seedlings and coconut seedlings for them to have a mixed crop and bigger all the year around income. They are growing rice, vegetables and have a mixed farming practice. But we want to expand this so that coffee will be a new product for them. Others like the indigenous people also make baskets to supplement their livelihood. Preda gave pedicab bicycles to farmers so they would have a livelihood after a bad harvest.

Preda is promoting organic growing and opposes the use of chemicals. The Aeta indigenous people have harvested the wild Pico mangos for generations and they are naturally grown and Preda is assisting them to develop the Pico mango variety and become organically certified.

Many other kinds of fruit are bought but in smaller volume. Profairtrade and Profood buys all shapes and sizes of mango fruit and also pineapple, Papaya, Guyabano, Passion fruit and Calamansi but in lesser amounts. Always paying the price the farmer asks and above the prevailing price with a premium or bonus added. Today the Preda Dried mangos, mango-coco balls, dried green mangos and sugar free dried mangos are available in Ireland and the UK and World shops throughout Europe and Japan (www.predafairtrade.net).

Directly paying a premium to the farmers. While fair prices are paid to the farmers on delivery of the mangos Preda Fair Trade agriculturists are also visiting the farmers to buy during the harvest and also paying the premium separately for transparency and documentation reasons. The partners of Preda, world shop people and customers are invited and are welcome to volunteer or visit Preda and meet the farmer beneficiaries of Fair Trade. They can also visit and join the work, help the children at the Preda children’s home. This gives the opportunity for students, volunteers, partners and customers of Preda fair trade products to come to know some of the farmers and visit them.

Visitors and volunteers are welcome especially at Harvest time which is from March to June in the Northern Island of Luzon. The harvest is from January to August in Mindanao. Preda fair trade it is done without discriminating and selecting only the biggest fruit, we reject none despite size, blemishing since all are peeled, sliced and dried So all all sizes are bought. This is a huge benefit to the small farmers and growers.

Chemical free mangos. Preda fair trade has a unique chemical free dried mango dried without added preservative or coloring, completely natural and mango puree also. The puree or mash is exported to Germany and is combined with organic apples and is made into apple-mango and mango-orange and other fruits to make new drinks and smoothies. These are healthy and like many fruits can be strong antioxidant:
www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0023643806000673

LAND RIGHTS, ACTION FOR JUSTICE.

Preda FAIR TRADE is in partnership with the indigenous native growers to bring them into organic growing. Profairtrade also delivers additional assistance to the poorest families providing other help such as training, community education, school supplies and pedi-cabs. There is capacity training and product development seminars, housing assistance for handicraft and other producers. Some of these training seminars and capacity building is done in cooperation with the Preda partners in developed countries who import and distribute the Preda producer’s products.
The struggle for land rights and ancestral domain is a nation wide movement. The indigenous people in the Preda Fair Trade project get support and help in getting the rights to their lands and saving it form mining companies, loggers and false claimants. The project is succeeding with land certificates granted to the communities.

Two Thousand of trees are planted yearly, they are of different varieties are planted every year under the tree planting programme conducted and paid for by Preda fair trade. This is one of the additional benefits of Preda fair trade to small farmers and indigenous people Preda Fair trade provides every year 2,000 mango grafted Saplings 1.5 meter tall and other tree varieties, mahogany, teak, Demalima etc. to restore logged-out deforested land.

The grafted tree sapling is more likely to survive and group and produce first fruit within five to six years. Preda youth groups and international volunteers join in the planting during the rainy season July to October. This helps the farmers expand their mango tree farm and income and also saves the soil from eroding and being washed away. The other climatic beneficial effect of replanting trees on deforested land is to reduce global warming and CO² in the atmosphere. Volunteers also visit the farmers and sometimes they choose to live in the villages and work with them in the fields.

Preda Fair Trade helps small craft producers groups and artisan groups and helps the members to improve designs, create new products promotes their products locally and abroad and gives them capacity building training and interest free production loans and other forms of assistance. The materials used are sustainable, environmental friendly and some products are made with recycled raw materials.

We are a trading partner of the Major importers: DWP, Ravensburg; GEPA, Wuppertal; El Puente, Nordstemmen (all Germany); FTO, The Netherlands; World Shops Germany and Austria.

PREDA FAIR TRADE FUNDS SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT PROJECTS

The People’s Recovery Empowerment and Development Assistance (PREDA) Foundation Inc. (www.preda.org) is an active social development organization today with 63 professional Filipino employees implementing projects that saves children from sexual abusers, and from life in the brothels and sex bars frequented by Filipino men and foreigners of all nationalities. The Foundation was first established in 1974 in Olongapo City 1974 by Shay Cullen an Irish member of The Missionary Society of St. Columban. Preda work is assisted by the earnings from the Fair trade. A percentage on each product earns enough to help provided the following social development and assistance projects.