When searching for gifts for birthdays, weddings, anniversaries and other special occasions it can be hard to find something unique and truly meaningful.
Fair trade, ethical gifts are becoming more popular than ever with a vast range to choose from. Instead of burdening family and friends with unwanted, everyday gifts why not surprise them with a genuine and heartfelt offering? There is a vast range of gifts ranging from help for impoverished families in the third world to support for fair trade producers working their way out of poverty.
"Will urban sprawl spread so far that most people lose all touch with nature? Will the day come when the only bird a typical American child ever sees is a canary in a pet shop window? When the only wild animal he knows is a rat - glimpsed on a night drive through some city slum? When the only tree he touches is the cleverly fabricated plastic evergreen that shades his gifts on Christmas morning?" - Frank N. Ikard, North American Wildlife and Natural Resources Conference, Houston, March 1968
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The Exotic Paper Company produces 100% recycled paper and paper products like stationery sets, jotters, journals, sketch pads and shopping lists all with the inclusion of elephant, reindeer or rhino poo. They also have a range of handmade and plantable papers as well as poo planters (grow kits with a difference!). They make unique and unusual gifts and their paper provides an innovative and ethical way of printing letters, invitations, menus, etc. Their products help support people and animals as well as helping to sustain the environment. www.elliepoopaper.co.uk
Looking for unusual gift ideas? The Camphor Tree is a smaller business selling attractive and high quality gift ideas. Their products are quirky, unusual and handmade, from small suppliers. Take a look at their Fairtrade gift ideas or Unusual Gift sections. The Camphor Tree also sell a range of curious and interesting reclaimed and recycled products. Click here for more...
Turtle Doves make recycled, ethical clothing out of pre-loved jumpers. They make once-loved garments into ethical clothing. They have been operating as a recycled clothing store since November 2009, recycling cashmere fabrics & other knits they buy into gorgeous Eco-friendly, fashionable items of clothing, which are useful and beautiful too! www.turtle-doves.co.uk
Tree2mydoor is a unique gift company that specialises in sending personalised trees as gifts to people all over the UK and Ireland. They have created special tree gift packs for newborn baby gifts, green wedding gifts and 4th, 5th and 25th wedding anniversary gifts. Tree gifts range from native UK tree species to garden fruit trees and indoor citrus trees.
TreeTwist exists to make it easy and fun for you to plant a tree and make a positive contribution towards our environment. If you give the gift of a tree, they will plant it in collaboration with Trees for Life in the Caledonian Forest in the North West Highlands of Scotland. It will grow for the rest of your life. To acknowledge your commitment, they will send you a TreeTwist.
More Than Gifts specialises in quality handcrafted gifts sourced from Fair Trade producers and small village communities. www.morethangifts.co.uk
Butterfly Treasures. Goods of quality & beauty in personal accessories, jewellery, home ware and children's items. The goods, art and crafts come from all over the world and represent small co-operatives, art workshops, individual craft workers and artisans from Vietnam, Sri Lanka, India, Nepal, Kenya, Zambia, Mongolia, Philippines and and others. These goods are fairly traded.
By Nature offers a fantastic selection of organic and ethical gifts. Green living in style ... no compromise.
Revolution – Fair Trade that doesn’t cost the earth. A wide range of fair trade gifts. They also stock Remarkable recycled stationery and Ecover cleaning products.
Indigo Ocean Trading is a family run business based in Bucks and it brings a treasure trove of unique hand made fair trade gifts and silver jewellery. Their diverse range of fair trade gifts range from hand carved and painted wooden toucans, geckos and fish to recycled tin tealight holders and beautifully hand embroidered bags and purses as well as candles and handmade silver jewellery. All of their products have been exchanged for a fair wage. www.indigooceantrading.co.uk
Other useful gift providers
Greener Style aims to help people have a stylish and sophisticated home while also being in balance with the environment.
Orchid Trading Supporting fair trade across the globe by offering high quality musical instruments, arts and crafts at affordable prices. All of their products are produced from natural materials and sourced in an ethical manner. Registered BAFTS importers.
Siesta Global Fairtrade Crafts Recognised Fair Trade suppliers of ethnic Gifts, Musical Instruments, Buddhist Items and Clothes from around the world. Retail and Wholesale welcome.
The Organic Hamper Company Specialists in luxury organic food and gift hampers. Beautiful hand-packed gift hampers filled with the best organic and fair-trade products.
Reviews and feedback
Indigo Ocean Trading. "Many thanks for the tealight holder." - Louise Hill