European Fair Trade Association (EFTA)
EFTA (the European Fair Trade Association) is an association of eleven Fair Trade importers in nine European countries. EFTA was established informally in 1987 by some of the oldest and largest Fair Trade importers. It gained formal status in 1990. EFTA is based in the Netherlands and has Dutch Articles of Association.
The aim of EFTA is to support its member organisations in their work and to encourage them to cooperate and coordinate. It facilitates the exchange of information and networking, it creates conditions for labour division and it identifies and develops joint projects. It does this, among others, by organising meetings of the members (on food, handicrafts, marketing, managers) and by circulating relevant information to them. It is also maintaining a database of EFTA suppliers, called Fairdata, which contains details on suppliers and their products. EFTA has an office in Brussels which is responsible for the execution of the Fair Procura project, funded by the EU; the aim of this project is to make public authorities and institutional buyers local actors of sustainable development.