Fairtrade is about better prices, decent working conditions, local sustainability, and fair terms of trade for farmers and workers in the developing world.
Fairtrade Labelling was created in the Netherlands in the late 1980s. The Max Havelaar Foundation launched the first Fairtrade consumer guarantee label in 1988 on coffee sourced from Mexico. Here in the UK, the Fairtrade Foundation was established in 1992, with the first products to carry the FAIRTRADE Mark launched in 1994. The FAIRTRADE Mark is a registered certification label for products sourced from producers in developing countries.
Sales of Fairtrade products in the UK have risen from £16.7 million in 1989 to over £1.3 billion in 2011. The largest sum is spent on sugar products – 42% of sugar sold in the UK carries the Fairtrade Mark. This is followed by cocoa products, then bananas and coffee. The list also includes things such as other fruits, tea, flowers, cotton and wine.
St. Stephen’s is a Fairtrade church and we only use Fairtrade coffee, tea, sugar, communion wine and toilet roll.
In our worship on Sunday 5th March we shall also be marking Fairtrade Fortnight by:
Þ reflecting on the biblical theme of justice for the poor;
Þ noting our role as a Fairtrade church,
Þ and encouraging each other to support this initiative.
There will be a stall selling fair-trade products so please bring some money to spend. For lunch Dora will be bringing a dish prepared with Fairtrade ingredients – maybe you would like to take up this opportunity too!
If you would like to know any more information about Fairtrade then please speak to Clare Allcock who is part of the diocesan Fairtrade committee.