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What is Fairtrade?

Fairtrade is about better prices, decent working conditions and fair terms of trade for farmers and workers across the world. It’s not just about tracing products back to their source – it’s about improving the lives and communities of the people who produce them and ensuring that they have the resources they need to continue.

The East of England Co-op has established the sale of fairly traded goods for more than 20 years and in 1998 Co-op became the first supermarket in the UK to start selling Fairtrade products in every store.

Fairtrade and Climate Justice 

The facts are straightforward. Farmers and workers in countries such as Kenya, Ethiopia and Honduras, who have done the least to contribute to climate change, are disproportionately affected by it. The climate crisis is the biggest threat to the livelihoods of millions of small-scale farmers and agricultural workers in low-income countries worldwide.

Farmers need better incomes and financial support to adapt to changing weather patterns and change their farming methods towards a low-carbon economy. By choosing Fairtrade, you show solidarity with those on the frontline of the climate crisis. You are part of the Fairtrade movement, and you have the power to drive long-term change, not only with your shopping choices but with your support in spreading the message.

The problem:

Climate change is an immediate threat to farmers’ livelihoods, and to the products we love, like chocolate, coffee and bananas. Unless we clamp down hard on global emissions, we will all suffer. As a matter of justice and a matter of science, the matter of the climate crisis cannot be delayed any longer.

What needs to happen? 

Farmers in climate vulnerable countries need fairer value, fairer prices and fairer trading practices to resource the investment needed for mitigation, adaptation, diversification and resilience in the face of the climate crisis. And we can’t rely on global summits and governments to take action fast enough to solve the climate crisis. Ahead of COP27, we must build pressure on governments to keep 1.5 alive. By doing so, we stand in solidarity with people in climate vulnerable nations who will be most impacted by temperature rises.

How does choosing Fairtrade support farmers facing the Climate Crisis now? 

Our trading system is weighted against low-income farmers. The prices paid for the crops behind some of our favourite foods need to increase significantly in order for farmers to escape the cycle of poverty and still have the means to adapt climate emergencies. Now more than ever, they need fairer pay, fairer prices and fairer trading practices.

What can you do?

Choosing Fairtrade is one simple decision UK shoppers and businesses can make to stand with farmers and workers on the frontline of the climate crisis. Fairtrade works with farmers to strengthen environmental and climate protection, to share resources, training and knowledge so they can face climate challenges right now.

Choose Fairtrade this Fairtrade Fortnight and beyond; choose to fight for climate justice, for farmers on the front line of climate change, for our planet and for future generations. Choose the world you want.

Fairtrade Fortnight Video

We have produced a short video to help demonstrate just some of the Fairtrade products that you can find within our stores. The video also explains some of the positive impacts that purchasing Fairtrade can have.

Fairtrade Recipes 

Why not try incorporating some Fairtrade products into your recipes this Fairtrade Fortnight? We've produced two recipes that utilise Fairtrade ingredients. 

You can download the recipe cards via the links below: 

Banana Loaf Recipe 

Chocolate Fondue Recipe

You can also visit the Fairtrade Foundation website to find more recipes that use a range of Fairtrade products by clicking here.

Resources to help research Fairtrade:

To help you research more about Fairtrade and the positive benefits that it has on communities and producers around the world, we've put together some links! 

Fairtrade Foundation

Fairtrade Communities

Fairtrade School Resources