Kiwi company named Fairest Fairtrader at international awards held in Germany.
A New Zealand business that champions ethically sourced food and beverages has been crowned the "Fairest Fairtrader" at a set of international awards.
All Good Organics, which imports Fairtrade bananas and also makes the Karma Cola drink, received the award in Germany overnight.
The awards were the first held by Fairtrade International, the organisation that sets Fairtrade standards and co-ordinates the labels that appear on Fairtrade products, such as All Good's bananas.
All Good received the "Fairest Fairtrader Award", a prize which recognised "special efforts or innovation by outstanding individuals within the global Fairtrade system".
All Good co-founder Simon Coley said Karma Cola probably piqued the judges' interest.
"We've kind of gone a bit beyond Fairtrade with that in that there is no such thing as Fairtrade-certified cola nut, although there is a lot of it traded in Africa."
Coley said All Good sourced its cola nut from Boma in Sierra Leone and part of the proceeds from every bottle of Karma Cola sold went back to that village.
Some of the money from Karma Cola sales was used last year to build a bridge, which meant that for the first time the people of Boma could get vehicles to their village.
All Good first brought bananas into New Zealand in 2010 and is now selling 60,000 bunches a week here. Its banana sales are up 30 per cent in the past year. Coley said All Good's drinks business, which includes Karma Cola, had grown 500 per cent in the past 12 months.
Over 25,000 bottles are being sold each week in New Zealand as well as Australia, Hong Kong, Singapore and Britain.
• Fairtrade-certified products conform to standards that are supposed to ensure producers receive prices to cover the cost of production.
• They also provide a "Fairtrade premium", money goes into a fund for workers to "use to improve their social, economic and environmental conditions".
• Thousands of products are Fairtrade-certified to these standards - including bananas, coffee, gold and sporting goods.
Source: Fairtrade International.