Published Thursday, 18th February 2021
Next week marks the start of Fairtrade Fortnight 2021 (22nd February - 7th March).
Faced with the challenges of both the climate emergency and COVID-19, Fairtrade producers face a bigger battle than ever in 2021 to have their needs met and be treated fairly in the global trading system. Fairtrade Fortnight is an opportunity to raise awareness of these challenges and for individuals to support the Fairtrade cause in the fight against exploitation and unbalance.
What you can do
You can show your support easily, by seeking to buy more Fairtrade products (look for the Fairtrade logo on the product packaging). Fairtrade products such as tea, coffee, chocolate and bananas can be bought in all the main supermarkets. Many are supermarket own-brand, so cheaper than some of the big brand versions that aren’t Fairtrade!
During Fairtrade fortnight 2021, the Fairtrade Foundation are encouraging everyone to “Choose the world you want” and use their voice to share the realities of the struggles faced by farmers due to climate change. Share stories on social media, host a meeting or event or speak about the issues with a friend. Or why not join the Fairtrade Fortnight Festival?
If you work in education you can download the Fairtrade Fortnight resource packs for everything you need to teach your students more on this important topic.
Learn more about Fairtrade in the borough and show your support by joining the Sutton Fairtrade group. You can also visit the Fairtrade website to discover more about the challenges faced by farmers and get ideas on how you can get involved in Fairtrade fortnight further.
Liz Udall, of the Sutton Fairtrade group says, “I believe it's vital to back Fairtrade, which enables farmers to get a fair deal and a living income for their hard work, so they can support their families. By buying products with the Fairtrade Mark, tea, coffee, bananas, chocolate and many more, everyone can do something to help producers who are now struggling with the additional pressures of COVID19 and the effects of Climate Change.”
What Sutton Council is doing
Sutton has been a Fairtrade borough since 2007. This achievement has been driven by the Sutton Fairtrade group with the support of numerous organisations and individuals across Sutton, as well as Sutton Council. Our Fairtrade commitments are included in our sustainable procurement policy and the council continues to purchase Fairtrade products such as the tea and coffee supplied during meetings and training sessions.
How this affects the climate emergency
In climate vulnerable countries in particular the devastating effects of the climate emergency are being felt by producers, with extreme weather such as droughts and flooding as well as crop diseases significantly impacting harvest.
Fairtrade supports more sustainable farming methods and ensures fair pricing that allows reinvestment and ensures key environmental protections such as improved soil and water quality, pest and waste management and avoiding the use of harmful chemicals, all requirements to meet the Fairtrade status.