Journal of Business Ethics 153 (1):265-282 (2018)

Abstract
The growing availability and consumption of Fairtrade products is recognised as one of the most widespread ethically inspired market developments, and as an example of activist-driven change within the wider marketing system. The Fairtrade Towns movement, now operating in over 1700 towns and cities globally, represents a comparatively recent extension of Fairtrade marketing driven by local activists seeking to promote positive change in production and consumption systems. This paper briefly explores the conventional framing of the role that ethically related activism plays in the operation of markets and in influencing market participants. It then presents key insights gathered from a grounded theory exploration of Fairtrade Towns as activist-driven marketing systems, revealing the atypical nature of the activism involved. The findings demonstrate how local activists leverage their social networks to exert pressure and generate support to promote ethical consumption. The study suggests that Fairtrade Towns offer a new role for activists as Fairtrade itself becomes more mainstream, and considers the role they are fulfilling as ‘informal’ local marketers. The marketing dynamics revealed represent a complex and distinctive form of relational activism that seeks to build Fairtrade markets and highlight their positive benefits, with potential lessons for other local ethical market-building efforts in future.
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DOI 10.1007/s10551-016-3392-3
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References found in this work BETA

The Role of Personal Values in Fair Trade Consumption.Caroline Josephine Doran - 2009 - Journal of Business Ethics 84 (4):549-563.

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