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News & Blog

Fairtrade Fortnight 2021 Newsletter

Posted: 19th February 2021

Fairtrade Fortnight 2021 is almost upon us (22 February to 7 March) and, while we are unable to meet in person at events, there are still many ways we can participate.

The theme is Choose the World You Want, which highlights the growing challenges that climate change brings to farmers and workers in the communities Fairtrade works with.  They may have done the least to contribute to climate change but they are disproportionately affected by it.

Climate change is one of their biggest challenges, and low prices for their crops means that they are struggling to survive. The climate crisis is an immediate and ever-increasing threat to all of us, and those in climate-vulnerable countries are already seeing its impacts from droughts and crop disease to floods, heatwaves and shrinking harvests.

The Fairtrade Foundation has produced a lot of resources for schools and you can read more and download education packs for primary and secondary schools here.  Other information packs are also available from the Co-op

Whatever age you are, you can join the Fairtrade Foundation online Festival here.  And here are some events you can already sign up to.

Fairtrade Yorkshire has been working with other regions to organise a Community Arts Festival, which we are very pleased to support.  The Festival starts on Monday 22 February at 12noon, when Hadeel, Edinburgh’s Fairtrade Palestinian crafts distributor and retailer, arranges a live tour of the Atfaluna Society for Deaf Children in Gaza, where they create beautiful embroidered items.  The Edinburgh Group is very proud to sponsor this event.

Hadeel: https://www.hadeel.org/

Hadeel is also organising a Virtual Palestinian Food Demo on 24 February at 7pm, where host Maha Campbell will cook Maftool Maghrabiya: one of the most popular dishes of the rural areas of Palestine.
Register here.

Scottish Fair Trade Forum: https://www.scottishfairtradeforum.org.uk/

The Scottish Fair Trade Forum is organising “Wake Up and Smell the Coffee”, a coffee morning with a twist, on Saturday 27 February at 10am.  Sign up now for a free sample of coffee from the Sholi Fairtrade Cooperative in Rwanda.  On 24 February at 12noon there will be a roundtable discussion exploring Fairtrade’s role in tackling the climate emergency.

Pacari Chocolate: https://home.pacarichocolates.uk/

Pacari is organising a special Fairtrade Fortnight Online Chocolate Tasting, to take place on Friday 26th February at 6pm via Zoom.  Orders will need to be placed in advance to give time to deliver the chocolates, which can be sent throughout the UK.

Juan Andres is also inviting Fair Trade Chocolate lovers to get involved in a Chocolate Challenge, which implies changing from their usual brand, getting 100% made in Ecuador Fair Trade Chocolate, and telling others about it.  They can use the tag #PacariukFTF2021, and send photos with their Pacari.  5 winners will win 5 bars or an online chocolate tasting.

Pacari was rated the most ethical and sustainable Fair Trade chocolate in the UK by Ethical Consumer Magazine, Jan/Feb 2021: the first South American made chocolate to reach this position and the first ever tree to bar chocolate (i.e. the chocolate bar is made in the country that actually grows the cacao beans). This shows that a chocolate made in origin – usually developing countries like Ecuador – can make a difference not only to local people and the environment but also perform on a world-class stage.

Edinburgh University: https://www.ed.ac.uk/sustainability

Edinburgh University is arranging a number of events, including on 24 February at 3.30pm a discussion on how the Fairtrade system is addressing the challenges that climate change brings to workers in the Global South. This event will bring together a Fairtrade producer, a climate change expert, and a local Fairtrade business to speak about what Fairtrade means to them, and how the individual can drive long-term change. There will be a raffle of vouchers for Fairtrade products sourced from a local business.

Koolskools: https://www.koolskools.co.uk/

On Wednesday 3 March at 10am, Koolskools is organising an event for schools with keynote speaker Ranga Rajan, CEO of the Fairtrade-licensed factory, Dibella, in India.  Ranga will describe the work being done with the marginalised cotton farmers from whom the factory sources its Fairtrade cotton, to educate them on the impact of climate change and to develop methods of coping and combatting it.

Priestfield Church: https://www.priestfield.org.uk/

More locally, Priestfield Church on Sunday 21 February will feature Fairtrade in its online service, and on 4 March will hold a Zoom get-together and prayer time with Fairtrade refreshments at home.

Fair Trade Finders Scotland https://www.scottishfairtradeforum.org.uk/fair-trade-finders-scotland/

The Edinburgh Group is working with the Scottish Fair Trade Forum to develop a comprehensive listing of all locations across Scotland offering fair trade products, whether in cafes, shops, online, or any other format.  Anyone can submit a listing for inclusion and we particularly welcome help and input from younger members: hoping you can track down some Fairtrade goods and shops when you are out and about. You might be:-

An undercover detective, adding locations to the list when you visit or see them.

An interrogator – ask staff if they can point out which Fairtrade items they sell so that you can add them to the list.

A recruiting sergeant – getting other people, or maybe groups, Brownies, Cubs, Scouts, to look for Fairtrade goods and add them to the list.

We hope this will prove a fun way for people to learn and think about Fairtrade as well as help the sale of Fairtrade goods so that workers in poor countries can receive fair pay for their hard work.

Business Comment

Business Comment is the Edinburgh Chamber of Commerce’s bi-monthly magazine. It provides insight on Edinburgh’s vibrant business community, with features on the city’s key sectors, interviews with leading figures and news on new business developments in the capital.
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