Sustainable development is only possible if we make decisions based on their economic, environmental AND social impact. Fair trade is core to social sustainability. It means workers are safe in their workplace, and are paid fairly. And when the supply chain behind products and services signs up to the Fairtrade standard, it means they are working to both social and environmental standards.
This may (or may not) impact the price. As shoppers we need to remind ourselves that it is not that the product is ‘more expensive’, it is that someone else is paying the price for cheap products – whether that is through low wages, poor – even dangerous – working conditions, and damage to the environment.
Choosing Fairtrade show businesses and governments that you believe in fair and just trade, and by doing so you potentially inform and shape future standards.
So where can you buy FairTrade products locally?
Most of the major supermarkets stock a variety of food and drink products that come with this certification and our Co op has a good selection. The Minster is a Fairtrade Church and the Minster shop on Church Street also stocks food and drink products, such as tea, coffee, cocoa, sweets, chocolates, jam, biscuits and peanut butter. The shop also has a wide selection of FairTrade gifts such as toys, musical instruments, jute bags and scarves so it is particularly well stocked if you are looking to shop more ethically. The cafe there also sells FairTrade wine, tea and coffee so you can take a well earned break after all that shopping.
So, if you would like to check where to shop for specific products, please consult the directory on the FairTrade website. You can also find information there to help you stock more products if you are a business or if you are a teacher looking for resources to help you teach about the topic in class.
Let us know if you know of other Fairtrade stockists in the area.