Producer groups need to be directly engaged if child labour is to be addressed and eliminated, according to the Fairtrade Foundation. A recent article in the Guardian explores this theme, and steps the Fairtrade movement has taken recently to empower local groups within the governance of Fairtrade International.
You can read the article here
The newspapers have suddenly been full of stories about a worldwide banana crisis. This story isn’t a surprise to some members of the Cambridge City Fairtrade Group who have visited banana-growing communities. Small scale banana farmers, even in remote communities, have been aware of problems for some time. The Fairtrade Foundation has an interesting article about the reality of Bananageddon – you can read it here.
A poll has revealed that the majority of consumers would agree to pay more for bananas if this means that farmers have better wages and working conditions.
The survey by the Fairtrade Foundation has been released on the second week of the Fairtrade Fortnight, which is focusing on bananas. Bananas price has almost halved over the past decade, despite farmers facing an 85% increase in the production cost.
According to the new poll, 84% of consumers said they would pay more for bananas, if this means better lives for farmers in developing countries and 60% believed that the government should step in to investigate the policies of retailers.
Surprisingly, 40% of interviewees believed the price of bananas had increased, despite being the opposite. More than half of respondent (58%) think that supermarkets should increase prices to a level that ensures fair conditions for banana farmers.
Read more at www.blueandgreentomorrow.com
A Message from the Fairtrade Foundation:
Firstly, thanks for the thousands of events that you have organised. from banana shake stalls and coffee mornings to banana splits and Fairtrade debates. Groups showed amazing creativity in the events they organised to support the campaign to make bananas fair. Foncho himself was overwhelmed by the reception you gave him. “It’s the people – the Fairtrade Foundation and all the supporters, the people, who push Fairtrade forward and enable Fairtrade to have an impact for me and other farmers. Supporters in the UK have received me like a member of their own family.”
Thanks to your efforts we now have over 30,000 petition signatures. Together we have succeeded in highlighting the impact that unfair supermarket pricing has on banana producers like Foncho.
However, we urgently need more petition signaturesto convince the government to act. By showing that more consumers and supporters care about the futures of millions of banana farmers and workers we can give Vince Cable, Secretary of State for Business, a mandate he cannot ignore. If our retailers can’t or won’t act we must make sure he intervenes by calling for a market investigation into the banana industry and protecting those who grow the UK’s favourite fruit.
We have just a few weeks to go before we hand the petition in. Please sign the petition online here. You can also collect signatures on our petition form and send them back to the Fairtrade Foundation by 5 May.
Now more than ever, every signature counts.
St Bede’s students are committed to actively supporting Fairtrade. St Bede’s is a Fairtrade School, with a Steering Group which is entirely made up of the school’s students, facilitated by Miss Goldsmith.
So how did St Bede’s Inter-Church School mark Fairtrade Fortnight this year? This is their report:
This year for Fairtrade Fortnight our school’s Fairtrade Steering Group led assemblies for the lower school, as well as a sell-out stall! The theme for Fairtrade Fortnight was ‘Stick with Foncho’, which was part of a national campaign to promote Fairtrade products like bananas and chocolate.
On Monday 3rd March we ran our annual Fairtrade day for the whole of year 7. They were taught about the importance of buying Fairtrade and this year’s campaign, did some food tasting to see whether they could taste the difference between Fairtrade and non-Fairtrade products, and created their own Fairtrade snack as part of the Snack Attack Challenge. The quality was very high standard and the students worked very hard and enthusiastically on their products and marketing campaigns and had an enjoyable day. The Steering Group has now selected the top entries to be submitted into the national competition run by Traidcraft. A few years ago, a group of students from St Bede’s won this competition, so fingers crossed for this year!
Thank you to everyone who took part in the activities, and all of the staff and students who helped to make Fairtrade Fortnight a success!
Miss Goldsmith and the Fairtrade Steering Group
On Tuesday, Amanda Taylor visited St Mary’s Junior School once again, and was presented with a very big cheque. This was money that the school has raised for the Fairtrade Foundation.
The girls are learning about fair trade and have a stall at which they can buy fair trade snacks such as bananas and Geobars. Longer term, they hope to become a Fairtrade school.
Once again, we would like to thank St Mary’s, the staff and students, for their amazing support to Fairtrade and a better world for producers all around the world.
Recently, St Mary’s Junior School invited Amanda Taylor to come to the school to talk about Fairtrade. Amanda is a member of the Cambridge City Fairtrade Group and spoke with the girls about Fairtrade, its benefits to producers and consumers alike, and the current emphasis on Fairtrade bananas.
The event was organised as part of St Mary’s concern for global issues and ongoing commitment to Fairtrade. Amanda would like to thank the school and the girls for the welcome she received and for an interesting and enjoyable visit.