The first Fairtrade bananas arrived in the UK in 2000. By 2012, with another supermarket announcing that it was switching to all Fairtrade bananas, it was expected that 38% of that sector in the UK would become Fairtrade (Fairtrade Foundation, 2012). Plantation workers often earn less than £1.00 a day. Fairtrade sales can double what workers receive. Fairtrade is about better prices, decent working conditions, local sustainability, and fair terms of trade for farmers and workers in the developing world. We can all help make trade fairer by what we buy and what we ask for in our shops and cafés.
The Stony Stratford Fairtrade Group aims to add our voice to others demanding a trade system with producers at its heart. We seek to promote understanding, sale and use of Fairtrade goods locally.
We are working towards Stony Stratford achieving Fairtrade Town status with the Fairtrade Foundation (www.fairtrade.org.uk ).
Fairtrade supporters in Stony Stratford include the Town Council, local churches, schools, community organisations, businesses and local residents.
The group runs Fairtrade stalls at various town events during the year and works with others during Fairtrade Fortnight (February/March each year) to bring the Fairtrade message to more people. We regularly run a Fairtrade wine, juice and snack stall at the Cock and Bull Beer Festivals, have held Fairtrade meals, organised exhibitions in the library, held a Town raffle with the support of the Stony Stratford Business Association and visited and surveyed local businesses and retailers.
We see new Fairtrade products arriving in local stores but the town does not yet meet the criteria set by the Fairtrade Foundation for becoming a Fairtrade Town. It seems that the town falls short especially in relation to the availability of Fairtrade products in local cafés, restaurants and pubs. If you would like a Fairtrade drink (teas/coffees/hot chocolate/wine etc) when you are out and about in Stony Stratford, why not show your support by always asking for Fairtrade?
To find out more, please contact Margaret Newens on 01908 564500 or firstname.lastname@example.org or go to: www.fairtrade.org.uk.