Three continents, three countries: Fairtrade International looks at the consequences of the pandemic.

A case study of Fairtrade International

Yes, it was a challenge. “Farmers – Fighting the global crisis”, a nine-part series with three short films and photographs each from a cooperative in three countries at three points in time. The concept: local visual creators from the Fairpicture network visit a Fairtrade cooperative in Peru, Indonesia and Kenya in spring, summer and autumn of 2021. There they document the effects of the pandemic and the Covid Relief Programme.


Fairtrade International

Visual creators

Angela Ponce, Omar Quezada, Nyimas Laula, Rizky Rahad, Nyokabi Kahura


Response to the pandemic


Kenya, Peru, Indonesia


April to November 2021


A perfect team with a joint goal has passed the stress test: Co-Creation prevails Lockdown, Quarantine, Covid-19 & Co.


Kenyan coffee farmers Caroline and Nahashon Rono rest on the lawn next to the coffee trees in the afternoon. They are proud of being increasingly successful in earning a good income from their coffee. Not even the pandemic is deterring them from their path. 

©Nyokabi Kahura/Fairtrade International/Fairpicture

The effects of the pandemic

The countries of the Global South were hit particularly hard by Covid-19. Not only in terms of health, but also economically. The effects were severe due to lower mobility and export restrictions. Funded by the German Development Cooperation (BMZ), Fairtrade International launched a “Covid relief” programme for Fairtrade producers in 21 countries in response to the pandemic. To document the impact and raise awareness among the population in the North and South, the project was to be visually documented – with “FARMERS”, a documentary web series.


A true co-creation across continental borders

Filmmaker Thorsten Kleinschmidt sat at the director's and editor's desk in Germany together with Tobias Thiele from Fairtrade International. Lara from Fairpicture took on the role of a coordinating producer. The three visual creators teams from Fairpicture each researched potential protagonists on site and then discussed their “casting” with Thorsten. Throughout the production, the visual creators were the main contact for the portrayed. They developed the story with them, conducted the interviews and were also responsible for the photographic coverage of the video series. The result: three completely different and unique series from the point of view of local image-makers that give an insight into the lives of Roberto, Ponisih and Caroline.

In the hope of being able to build a better life, Ponisih moved to the city years ago.
But life was difficult and full of hardships.
Ponisih returned to the countryside and became a coconut sugar farmer.
©Nyimas Laula/Fairtrade International/Fairpicture


Fairpicture has a fantastic network of creatives and it is easy and efficient to work with them. And it is important to us that we, Fairpicture and the local creators share the same vision of fairness and a sensitive approach to human rights topics.

Tobias Thiele, Image Editor, Fairtrade International


Roberto is a banana farmer, family man and spokesperson of his neighbourhood in La Noria, Peru. He believes that good work and strong cohesion can improve the lives of his family and his whole community. 

©Angela Ponce/Fairtrade International/Fairpicture

A big compliment for Fairpicture

Tobias Thiele of Fairtrade International says: “FARMERS is the most comprehensive video series that we have done within Fairtrade globally. These stories help us communicate why we at Fairtrade advocate and fight for fairer global trade. We achieved to establish an emotional connection between the farmer protagonists and our global audience.”


The broad feedback from our audience was very positive and emotional.

Tobias Thiele, Image Editor, Fairtrade International


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