Farmers are on the front line of climate change. For millions of farming families and communities worldwide, especially those in the global south, the impacts of climate change are a daily reality.
Higher temperatures, drought, floods, extreme weather, crop diseases, soil erosion and sea water contamination threaten livelihoods and food security. All of us – consumers, retailers, traders – rely on farmers to produce the food we need to feed a growing global population. 80 percent of the world’s food comes from 500 million small-scale farms. If they suffer, we all feel the consequences. Some studies suggest that a rise of just one degree could lead to reductions of between five and ten percent in the yields of major cereal crops.
Climate change isn’t fair. Often, it’s those with the lowest carbon footprint who are hit hardest. No-one knows this better than Fairtrade farmers and producers, some of whom are already struggling with loss of land, crops and livelihood. Extreme weather and rising temperatures are already hitting the production of major Fairtrade commodities including coffee, cocoa and tea.