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Fairtrade Fortnight 2022

21st February – 6th March  

This year the Fairtrade Foundation has again ‘Choose the World You Want’ as its theme, continuing from last year. We all want a world that remains habitable and preserves life: creation is wonderful and awe-inspiring, and caring for it is as much a necessity as a responsibility.

As I write, weather forecasters are warning of severe storms in the UK. It has been estimated that about 8 million trees have been uprooted in storms in the last few months. The climate is warming, and storms are one of the consequences. These storms are frightening enough in the UK, and the damage left behind takes a long time to repair.

In countries where many of our most popular products are grown (such as tea, coffee, chocolate, bananas), weather extremes are even more devastating because poverty strips away resilience, and the people don’t have the same access to resources to recover. These are people who have contributed the least to climate change, and yet they suffer the most.

The Fairtrade Foundation sums it up thus: ‘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.’*

The problem is described in the following statement: ‘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 fair pay, fair prices and fairer trading practices.’*

What can we do in the face of this injustice? One simple action is to choose to support these farmers by buying products that are certified Fairtrade. This not only provides a better income (and all that that means) for the farmers, but Fairtrade also offers help, training and resources to face climate challenges.

Look out for the Fairtrade symbol on products in supermarkets, or search online for fairtrade goods, for example on the Traidcraft website https://www.traidcraftshop.co.uk . The following website may inspire you with recipes containing Fairtrade ingredients: https://www.therealmealdeal.com/recipes-for-fairtrade-fortnight-2021/

Together let’s choose a world that’s fairer, and where our support for Fairtrade speaks out against injustice and the threat of climate change.

*The Fairtrade Foundation paper ‘Key messages and FAQs on Fairtrade and climate justice’ can be downloaded from www.fairtrade.org.uk under Resources. 

Glenys
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