A small shop in Reggio Calabria (Italy) and a group of enthusiastic young people saw the birth of an initiative which led to the setting up of the first and only Fair Trade organization in Malta.
Koperattiva Kummerċ Ġust (KKĠ) was set up in 1996 by the Third World Group (TWG). The TWG is one of the oldest development ngos in Malta. In 1997 KKĠ received full recognition by the Maltese state under the Cooperative Act. Run on a voluntary basis, KKĠ, is today one of the largest cooperatives in Malta with nearly 100 members.
In the beginning of summer of 1997 KKĠ purchased a small shop in Valletta. The shop was purchased through the financial backing of CRIC, a leding Italian NGDO and Banca Etica of Verona. In September 1997 KKĠ opened the first world shop in Malta called L-Arka (The Ark). With over a thousand different products this small shop, which is open daily from Monday to Sunday, has established a niche in the market for extremely original gifts and delicious food items. In these last few weeks the food items have been increased.
In 2000 KKĠ became a member of CTMaltromercato (Coperazione Terzo Mondo), Italy’s largest fair trade organization. CTM is a consortium of world shops with more than 120 member organizations and over 200 points of sale. Since then KKĠ members have participated in seminars and general assemblies organized by CTM.
During the past years KKĠ has organized national events. For these events KKĠ has invited over to Malta people directly involved in fair trade such as Harini Narayanan, a producer from India, Carol Wills IFAT’s executive director, Stefano Magnoni CTM’s vice-president, and Luca Palagi CTM’s expert on fair trade in Africa.
Throughout these years KKĠ has sought to increase its sales by participating in various events on a national and local level. Whenever and wherever we have been our products and the whole initiative has been welcomed enthusiastically.
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