Fair Trade in Tourism South Africa (FTTSA) is a pioneering initiative that promotes equitable and sustainable tourism development in South Africa through a range of activities including awareness raising, capacity building, advocacy and the facilitation of the world’s first Fair Trade tourism certification programme. The FTTSA certification programme awards a special certification Trademark (label) to tourism enterprises in South Africa that meet specific sustainability criteria based on global Fair Trade standards and locally relevant issues such as skills development, ownership and HIV/Aids management.
FTTSA was established under IUCN-South Africa in 2001, as a pilot project to test the relevance of Fair Trade to the post-apartheid context. Since 2004, FTTSA operates as an independent non-profit organisation in South Africa. To date, FTTSA has certified close to 70 establishments across South Africa. A wide variety of tourism establishments have qualified for the FTTSA-label including hotels, safari lodges, backpacker lodges, guesthouses, cultural tours and eco-adventure activities. Many of these products are small, emerging, and community-based businesses that are wholly or partially owned by rural black communities disenfranchised by apartheid.
Through this blog, we aim to share our vast experience in tourism development and Fair Trade certification. In addition, we want to share some of the amazing stories that about real people who are better off because of Fair Trade Tourism!