In alphabetical order, the shortlisted cities were:


The City of Bremen, bound to the promise of the UN Sustainable Development Goals and inspired by its tale of the Bremen town musicians, pledges to “Leave no one behind”. To us, this entails emphasizing the participation of all groups of society. Through dialogue and cooperation, we can combine the strengths of all to achieve fair and ethical trade, within our city and region as well as worldwide.
This vision is key even when creating municipal strategies. The main document strengthening fair and ethical trade in Bremen is our development policy guideline. It is the core of the city’s efforts towards development cooperation and international cooperation, fair and ethical trade and food value chains, peacekeeping and human rights. Dialogues with young people, citizens, civil society and municipal experts were central to the creation of the guidelines in 2015 and are still held regularly in order to evaluate progress and look into the future. The municipality provides opportunities for networking and knowledge exchange for various stakeholders. Complimented with financial support, this aims at strengthening their efforts towards fair and ethical trade, be it companies or civil society stakeholders. The City of Bremen is rich in its civil society organizations, who work tirelessly to make fair trade known and get citizens excited about its possibilities. Different formats are used to engage the wide city population and to provide interested people with more information, including trainees, pupils, students and organizations like universities, companies, churches, European friends and international sister cities – all in an effort to leave no one behind whilst bringing fair and ethical trade to the forefront.


History building history

Gothenburg plays a big part in fair trade history. We opened the world’s first fair trade shop in 1969 and we ́re proud of being in the front line. Our history has characterized the city and motivates us to achieve even more!

Gothenburg, a Fairtrade City since 2011, is today a center for innovations in sustainability, specifically fair and ethical trade, and plays an important role both nationally and internationally within this field.

As a result Gothenburg has become number one the last four years, in the Global Destination Sustainability Index. As a center for sustainable innovative entrepreneurship, Gothenburg is for example the cradle of “Nudie Jeans”, one of the worlds largest sustainable clothing brand.

Gothenburg has the foundation and willpower to revitalize the concept of fair and ethical trade. For example: the city ́s Fairtrade percentage out of its purchases of high risk produce increased from 22% to 96%, in only five years (2011-2016). The latest addition in this field is to offer every employee a Fairphone 3 (probably the first city to do so).

Fairtrade City Gothenburg shifted it ́s focus from advocacy to being the enabler for the entire community regarding fair and ethical trade. Fair and ethical trade can only happen through the actual purchase!

The companies who regularly meets the customers know how to market the fair and ethical products. That ́s why we want to be more of a facilitator to support their ideas of how to make a transition to a sustainable trade. As we see it, taking the step from “conventional” trade to fair trade is the simplest way to implement a great part of SDG ́s of 2030.

We are proud of our part in the fair and ethical trade history and we will make sure that we keep making history.


Malmö is arguably the most international city in Sweden, with 184 nationalities living in the city. Since the early 2000’s, Malmö has undergone a transition from industrial city to a sustainable and cultural hub. Being a multicultural city, issues of international human rights and ethics are high on the agenda. Malmö was the first city in Scandinavia to become a Fairtrade City in 2006, the first Swedish city to issue social bonds in 2020, and has a prominent scene of CSO’s acting for sustainability, climate justice and human rights.

Acting locally for a global impact is well embedded in the city’s procurement procedures, and the city has, for example, gone from 0,5% to 99% ethical coffee consumption in 12 years. Achievements like this make us eager to reach more goals.

In Malmö, it should be “Lätt att göra rätt”, which means it should be easy for anyone living in or visiting Malmö to do the right thing, e.g. choose fair trade, organic, local, seasonal food, find sustainable transport, fashion, entertainment etc. There is a large number of businesses and organizations providing sustainable offers throughout the city, many of these you can find on The Smart Map of Malmö and Ekoguiden Malmö.

In Malmö we also have a long tradition of international collaboration. In 2021, the ICLEI World Congress will be hosted by Malmö. In the coming years, Malmö will accelerate its transition to a climate neutral city. This will mean a high level of electrification of transport, where we want to spearhead the development of ethical batteries.


Neumarkt is a Bavarian middle-sized city with about 40.000 inhabitants. The Town Council of Neumarkt started a sustainability process in 2003. Until today many projects were implemented and new structures were built to strengthen sustainable development. In 2012 even a department for sustainability promotion was founded.

Neumarkt had been awarded as most sustainable middle-sized city in Germany in 2012 and won the prize “Capital of Fair Trade” in Germany 2019 (after placed several times in the “Top 3” before). Already in 2009 Neumarkt became the first Fair
Trade City in Bavaria.

In 2018 the City Council adopted the “Neumarkt Sustainability Strategy”, where Sustainable Lifestyle and Development Cooperation are two of the main fields of action.

There is still a way to go, but compared with other cities in Germany and respect the size of Neumarkt, there is a prominent engagement in promoting Fair Trade, especially by NGO ́s like the One World Shop and the Fair Culture Cafe.

The application for the Capital of Fair Trade Germany in 2019 comprised 57 projects and measures to support Fair Trade. Of course there are many Public Relations measures, but Neumarkt made also progress in eco- social procurement.

Although Neumarkt is a middle sized City, there is a very strong One World movement, which was started already 30 years ago. Today the One World Shop is as well a “Centre for Global Learning”. The most current initiative is an Academy for Global Learning, which is planned to found in autumn 2020.

For over 5 years Neumarkt has been running a partnership with Drakenstein in South Africa.

There are several projects implemented so far. One of the main focus is besides Climate Change the issue of Fair Trade. A Fair Trade “partnership-wine” from a farm in Drakenstein is sold in the One World Shop in Neumarkt.


The State Capital Stuttgart is a cosmopolitan, green, culturally rich and social city, home to people from over 180 nations. It has a centuries-old tradition as strong international market place in the heart of Europe with worldwide connections.

Above all, Stuttgart builds upon dialogue and strong partnerships of different stakeholders to promote concrete sustainable policies and action. The City Council and Stuttgart’s vibrant civil society have pushed fair trade since the 1970s: the first German fair trade shop opened in 1973 in Stuttgart, the UN Agenda 21 was implemented locally in the 1990s and the “One World Partnership” established in 2005. One of Stuttgart’s districts was the first in Germany to receive the Fair Trade label in 2011. Stuttgart founded the One World Centre in 2014 as vivid example of its spirit of international and social cohesion, a premise for intercultural exchange, global learning and fair trade. A strong focus lies on ethical public procurement. Stuttgart set new standards by carrying out innovative bidder dialogues, leading to new policies and market impulses. Moreover, the bustling “good business scene” pushes and mainstreams ethical trade even beyond Stuttgart’s urban society, expressed by the oldest and most important Fair Trade Fair worldwide.

Therefore, there was fertile ground for the City Council’s decision to adopt the UN 2030 Agenda with the SDGs as guiding principle in 2017. Stuttgart acts as frontrunner for SDG implementation. As first German city, Stuttgart published a voluntary local review based on SDG indicators in 2019 and established a coordination body to push SDG localisation strategically. Stuttgart traditionally fosters European and international partnerships and knowledge exchange on global sustainability agendas, e.g. within EUROCITIES.

Running for the award strengthens Stuttgart’s vision and ambition of assuming global responsibility. It benefits ethical trade partnerships, thus enforcing the next steps of sustainable economic transformation.

Special Mentions

The Evaluation Committee officially nominated the European cities in the running for the Special Mentions of the EU Cities for Fair and Ethical Trade Award 2021.

In alphabetical order, the selected cities were:

Bremen, Cologne, Gothenburg, Jelenia Góra, Lübeck, Malmö, Neumarkt, Stuttgart.

The EU Cities for Fair and Ethical Trade Award is an initiative of the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Trade implemented by the International Trade Centre.