The Fairtrade Foundation has appointed business strategy consultant Michael Jary as chair of its board of trustees.
Jary, co-founder and senior partner at OC&C Strategy Consultants, will replace David Clayton-Smith, who is stepping down at the end of a six-year term.
Jary said the Fairtrade model was “more relevant than ever” and was essential in securing food security. “The very simple idea behind Fairtrade is to empower the farmer and the worker to move beyond basic survival into a fair, living wage,” he told The Grocer. “There’s enormous distance to be travelled just on that goal. But already I’ve seen evidence that the Fairtrade price not only has a positive effect on living standards but can also allow farmers to increase the yield of their crops.”
Jary added that the Fairtrade mark was recognised by 80% of British consumers. “We have 400 Fairtrade towns and 500 Fairtrade schools in the UK, who work to raise the public awareness of Fairtrade. We want to get to more than half the total UK population actively choosing Fairtrade products by 2015, so that more products are traded fairly,” he said.
Fairtrade Foundation CEO Michael Gidney said: “There couldn’t be a better time for Michael, as a highly experienced strategist, to bring his leadership into our thinking. I look forward to working with him to deliver our ambitious business plans that will unlock the potential of Fairtrade to deliver even greater impact for millions of farmers and workers around the world.”
Jary, 50, is also the chair of Duchy Originals and a non-executive director of Nationwide Building Society. He is also chair of The HRH The Prince of Wales’s Social Enterprises.