A New World?
A New World?
Neoliberalism and Fair Trade Farming in the Eastern Caribbean
This chapter examines the link between neoliberalism and fair trade farming in the Eastern Caribbean. More specifically, it considers whether the fair trade movement's social justice and economic priorities are realized on the ground by focusing on the banana industry in Mabouya Valley, the largest banana-producing region in St. Lucia. Drawing on ethnographic research in the area conducted over three periods from 2000 to 2004, combined with an extensive survey of demography, economic activities, and attitudes among fifty-eight certified fair trade and seventy-five conventional banana growers residing in Mabouya Valley, the chapter explores whether fair trade in practice adequately satisfies mutuality and transparency in producer–consumer relationships. It shows that the fair trade market offers material and social advantages to Caribbean farmers.
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