This week sees the start of Fairtrade Fortnight 2014. Running from Monday 24th February - Sunday 9th March 2104, this year's campaign aims to transform the banana industry.
Over the past 10 years, the typical price of a banana in the UK has nearly halved, whilst the cost of production has doubled. The Fairtrade foundation is looking to change this and looks at making bananas fair. This means that every banana farmer and worker should:
• Work in conditions that are safe
• Earn enough to have a decent standard of living
• Have rights and benefits
They will be calling on Vince Cable to investigate unfair supermarket pricing practices and act to protect the producers of the UK’s favourite fruit. Foncho, a banana farmer from Colombia, was the first to sign, and you can stick with him and sign the petition at stickwithfoncho.org.uk
BRUISING BANANA WARS
We must demand that the price stickered on loose bananas reflects their true cost so that banana farmers and workers can earn a fair and decent living and their livelihoods are protected. It is believed that supermarkets will struggle to act on their own to do this.
The Fairtrade foundation is defining a 'fair banana' against four key criteria of Transparency, Social Justice, Economic Justice and Environmental Sustainability. They commissioned Ethical Consumer (ECRA) to examine how to effects of the major UK supermarkets stack up against these four criteria.
Though Sainsbury’s, The Co-operative, and Waitrose, which all source 100 per cent Fairtrade bananas, emerge more positively than other supermarkets from the scoring, the Foundation says no retailer can afford to be complacent.
There are some brilliant events taking place in London and around the UK this fortnight to help raise awareness of Fairtrade. Some of our favourites in our area include 'The Great Fairtrade Banana Bake Off in Camden, the 'Pop Up Fairtrade Shop and Creative Workshop' in West Ealing, and the 'Big Brew at Bow Church' in Bow.
To discover more about these and the many other events taking place this fortnight, simply search for your local town or postcode here
We must act now to deliver a fair deal to all banana farmers and workers. The Fairtrade website is packed with resources and ideas on how you can get involved. Here's how you can take action...
• Sign the online petition here.
• Search for local events happening around you here.
• Get fundraising! For inspiration, head over here.
If you're planning your own event, comment below to let us know so that we can share the news!