Fairtrade Fortnight 2011
- 02:43 pm, Mon 14th Mar 2011
The past two weeks marked Fairtrade Fortnight. I’m glad to see that the British spirit of fairness is still in good strength and Fairtrade products in 2010 had a retail value of £1.17bn compared with £836m in 2009.
I was pictured this week with five time Olympic gold medallist, Sir Steve Redgrave, as part of a bid to break the record for the world’s longest bunting. This was just one of a huge number of events big and small to help raise awareness of Fairtrade Fortnight.
It has been great to see so many people working to spread awareness and taking part in all kinds of activities over the last few weeks, but the work to achieve a fairer world will continue all year round and often go unnoticed.
The Fairtrade Foundation’s ‘Great Cotton Stitch-Up’ campaign is a drive to end unfair European cotton subsidies. West African cotton producers are some of the poorest farmers on the planet and yet, last year, had to compete with EU farmers who received over £600m in subsidies - the equivalent to Estonia’s entire EU contribution.
I have promised to support this campaign and will be raising the issue with Government Ministers in Parliament over the coming weeks. I hope that many other MPs will be asking questions too so that we can push the Government towards a fairer stance.
Fairness should always be at the heart of our nation’s vision. Whether we are talking about our local communities, the British economy, or our role on the global stage; fairness should always come first.
I’m proud to support the efforts of the Fairtrade Foundation, if you’re interested in their work then please visit their website www.fairtrade.org.uk