Massive risk in the rush to negotiate “Brexit”

The Fairtrade Foundation is asking everyone who is concerned about the livelihoods of those producers across the globe who depend on British trade, to contact their MP’s.

Take action now

There is a massive risk that in the rush to negotiate “Brexit”, vulnerable and voiceless farmers and workers from the poorest countries could be forgotten.

Too often in the past, changes to trade rules and new trade deals have harmed not helped the poorest people who work hard to grow the food we love. We need to manage risks such as:

  • Leaving the EU’s single market and customs area without putting in place measures similar to the ones which currently protect farmers in the poorest developing countries. Doing this would immediately punish millions of farmers and workers with an extra £1 billion import tax bill.
  • Rushing into free trade agreements with wealthier countries such as the US, China and Brazil without ensuring that these deals won’t undercut very poor countries which depend on the UK for much of their sales.

Many of us will remember the large trade campaigns of the past and so are aware of the immense damage that can be done by ill thought out trade agreements.  It is very disappointing that there has not been a public debate around trade issues either in the run up to the referendum or in its aftermath.   The hurried nature of discussion in the UK Parliament, undermines the ability of the UK public to hold their elected representatives to account in the trade negotiation process.

For the Fair Trade movement, secrecy and lack of any real democratic accountability regarding our trade negotiations is not on.  We welcome the reinvigoration of a large scale movement for trade justice: dedicated to protecting livelihoods in the UK and for producers across the globe who rely on UK trade.

Make no mistake, millions of livelihoods, both in the UK and overseas, are at risk in the renegotiation of the UK’s trade agreements.  Don’t leave the decisions to the few, who will protect the sectors of the economy that they are interested in, at the expense of everyone else.



Posted on March 1st, 2017 by Fairtrade Yorkshire News

Leeds poster competition for Fairtrade Fortnight ’17

FTF17-poster-grabThe Diocese of Leeds is holding another poster competition for 2017’s Fairtrade Fortnight, promoting this year’s theme: “Take a Fairtrade Break”.

Simply design an A4 poster promoting a Fairtrade Break – and remember of course to include the Fairtrade Mark!

The closing date is March 20th, and prizes of Fairtrade Easter eggs and certificates will be awarded to 3 different age-groups: Pre-School & Primary School Age, Secondary School Age, and Adults (18+). Entry is open to any individuals, school or college and groups of all ages in the Leeds Diocese area.

Entries should be sent by post to Mrs Barbara Judd, 57 Grosvenor Road, Shipley BD18 4RB. The name of the artist, their age-group and their organisation should be written on the artwork, so that each piece is clearly identifiable – and do provide contact details so that they can get in touch if you are a winner.

To get the inspiration flowing, why not check out the Fairtrade Foundation’s pages on the theme of a Fairtrade Break?

Good luck to all who enter!


Posted on February 17th, 2017 by Fairtrade Yorkshire

Food security: how Fairtrade helps level the playing field for small producers’

Professor Bob Doherty

Professor Bob Doherty

Professor Bob Doherty of the University of York Management School has written this excellent article on food security.

You can read the article here:

Fairtrade and food security


Posted on February 13th, 2017 by Fairtrade Yorkshire News

Say “I do” to Fairtrade gold

Josephine Aguttu has been a gold miner since she was 12, as soon as she was physically able to help her mother down the mine. She is one of the 16 million men, women and children working in the small scale gold mines of Africa, Latin America and Asia. Paid little, exposed to mercury and cyanide and at the mercy of middle men, this is the life of 90% of gold miners. Codes of practice only exist for the 10% in large mining companies.

But Josephine’s life has changed since Fairtrade became involved. Encouraged to organise themselves into a group (TIIRA Small Scale Mining Association), the miners learned how to work safely, to reduce the risk of tunnels collapsing and protect themselves and the environment from mercury and cyanide poisoning. With the knowledge they gained, and their strength as an organised group, they are now less vulnerable to exploitation.

Prescott’s Fairtrade Gold ring design – mine’s having a central sapphire!

Prescott’s Fairtrade Gold ring design – mine’s having a central sapphire!

Here in the UK, 200 goldsmiths have already signed up to design and make jewellery using Fairtrade Gold. New gold, traceable back to the mine, certified at every stage and stamped with the Fairtrade mark at the assay office – what could be better! This is new. Only 16% of the UK population has heard of Fairtrade Gold. If we want it, we have to ask our favourite jewellers for it. That’s exactly what I have been doing in Beverley! Searching for a local jeweller to replace my lost engagement ring with a Fairtrade Gold version, Prescott’s were able to immediately confirm that they could supply Fairtrade Gold. Guest & Philips, Daniela Draper and Hugh Rice might be able to supply it, but Samuel Lawrence would not.  I also discovered that Argos has a huge range of white and yellow Fairtrade Gold wedding bands.

Currently, 1000 tonnes of mercury is released into the environment every year by small scale mining. We can change that by choosing Fairtrade gold. Your choice can improve the lives of small scale gold miners and allow children to go to school instead of working down mines. Depending on how much gold is sold as certified Fairtrade, mining groups are paid an annual Fairtrade premium which they collectively decide how to invest for the benefit of their wider communities. Healthcare, education, transport, electricity and investment in the mine itself, are examples of the choices made, thanks to Fairtrade.

You can find out more about Fairtrade Gold and where to buy it at

Ros                                                                                                                                                              Cherry Burton Fairtrade Group

Posted on February 13th, 2017 by Fairtrade Yorkshire News

Sign of the times

Campaigners in Cherry Burton are celebrating after “Fairtrade Village” signs were erected by the East Riding of Yorkshire Council on each of the four roads leading into the village. Thanks to the generous support of village-based businesses who funded the signs, the village now has visible reminders of its status for residents and visitors alike. Placing of the signs will fulfil the aim of raising awareness in the local community of the impact that choosing Fair Trade makes on people in the developing world.

Cherry Burton has been a Fairtrade Village for 13 years, and was the first community in the East Riding to be awarded Fairtrade Village status. Widespread support by individuals, organisations and businesses has meant that status has been successfully maintained over the years.imgp3337

Pictured are: Adrian Hedges of I Love Kitchens and Paul Grundy of Elm Tree Farm B & B – two of the businesses who sponsored the signs. The other sponsors were: Mark and Jennene, The Bay Horse public house; Tom Ainley, plumber; Andrew Jeffrey, Kwikjet Cleaning Services; Kathryn Steels, North Bar Fabrics; Paul Staniford,; and Pauline Greenwood, Burton Mount Country House.



Posted on January 7th, 2017 by Fairtrade Yorkshire News

Churches make a difference to Fairtrade in Hull

The Fairtrade Churches Project – Making a difference to Fair Trade in Hull.

Check out our website.

Hull City Council, and the Hull One World Shop, together with support from all areas of the city made Kingston-upon-Hull into a FAIRTRADE City in March 2005.

Hull Fairtrade supporters

Hull Fairtrade supporters

The Fairtrade supporters in the churches are now working together to ensure that Fairtrade stays high in the priorities of all churches in the area.

Fairly Traded products are high quality, – because the farmers choose the best of the best for Fair Trade.

Fairtrade consumable products are readily available – see our directory of retail outlets on our website.

Fair Trade is growing – join us and make the world a better place for everyone, but especially for those who need it most.

Posted on January 7th, 2017 by Fairtrade Yorkshire News


If anyone is visiting Nepal do please go to the wonderful Fairtrade craft shop on the edge of Patan, part of greater Kathmandu. Their website is
Below is a quote from their website:
Dhukuti is our four-story treasure trove for the fair trade consumer. Located in Lalitpur (Patan), Dhukuti displays our entire line of ACP items. The individual customer can browse, touch, shop and learn about our process and philosophies. It is a favourite place amongst tourists and Nepalis because of its authenticity and accessibility.
We were captivated, it is an Aladdin’s cave of Fairtrade crafts, sadly we only has small holdalls as we had been walking in the hills and so were limited in how much we could pack. The quality of every thing we saw was incredibly high and the range was amazing.
We explained that we were involved in the Fairtrade movement in the UK and they were delighted that we could recognise them as partners in a world wide movement.
The shop is featured in the Rough Guide and Lonely Planet.
Janice Gwilliam

Coordinator Fairtrade Malton and Norton

Posted on January 7th, 2017 by Fairtrade Yorkshire News

Gold: always believe in your soul

Bradford and bling came together with a presentation on Fairtrade gold at Bradford Cathedral on 12th September.

Dan Omondi Odida, a gold miner from Kenya, came to speak to a crowd of seventy Fairtrade supporters, including attendees from the University of Bradford.

Karen Palframan (Fairtrade Yorkshire and Fairtrade Bradford Zone) and Dan Omondi Odida Photo credit: John Sargent

Karen Palframan (Fairtrade Yorkshire and Fairtrade Bradford Zone) and Dan Omondi Odida Photo credit: John Sargent

The Dean welcomed everyone to the Cathedral and ethical jewellers Rory McQuaid (the Ethical Jeweller, Otley) and Caroline Kindy (Element Jewellery, Hebden Bridge) supported Dan in the presentation, alongside Adam Gardner from the national Fairtrade Foundation and Mark Dawson and Karen Palframan of Fairtrade Yorkshire.

Dan spoke of the need for Fairtrade gold in order to address injustice in the gold trade.  This includes the lack of a fair price, child labour, ill health as a result of processing the gold, and environmental  damage caused by gold mining.

Fairtrade gold guarantees a fair price and a Fairtrade premium in addition (which can be spent by gold mining cooperatives to improve life in their communities).  The Fairtrade gold scheme includes safety and environmental standards.

Photo credit: John Sargent

Photo credit: John Sargent

You can check out Fairtrade gold jewellery for sale on these websites:

The Ethical Jeweller

Element Jewellery

Fairtrade gold rings will also be available from Argos.


Find out more about Fairtrade gold at the new ‘discover gold’ site:

Posted on September 26th, 2016 by Fairtrade Yorkshire News

Holme Valley Fairtrade are winners

We are absolutely delighted to announce that Holme Valley Fairtrade is the WINNER of THE BIG FAIRTRADE BREAKFAST CHAMPION CATEGORY in The annual Fairtrade Foundation campaigner awards.holmfirth  The group was crowned as victor because of their involvement in the launch of the Fairtrade All Party Parliamentary Group held at Westminster during Fairtrade Fortnight.  The APPG was set up by Holly Lynch MP (Halifax) and Jason McCartney MP (Colne Valley).  The panel were particularly impressed with the way the APPG opportunity brought Fairtrade to a wide audience, engaging everyone along the way with a fun and thoughtful approach.

Posted on September 26th, 2016 by Fairtrade Yorkshire News

Baildon scarecrows stand up for Fairtrade

“Pat-a-cake, pat-a-cake, Fairtrade man
Bake me a cake as fair as you can”

‘Nursery rhymes’ was the theme for this year’s Baildon Scarecrow Walk with 70 scarecrows to be found around the town centre.  Baildon Fairtrade group designed and built one along with a huge ‘cake’ decorated with Divine chocolate wrappers.

The annual Scarecrow walk is organised by Baildon in Bloom. This years took place on a warm sunny September Saturday, with hundreds of people finding scarecrows in various locations around the town.

Families and children patted the enormous cake baked by the Fairtrade man and more than 330 children went away with Fairtrade stickers while adults joined them in trying delicious Fairtrade chocolate cake buns.  Interested young people and other supporters were offered information about how Fairtrade supports sustainable farming practices.  Many people say that they already buy Fairtrade products and yet the point still needs to be made that without this organisation these producers would not have a livelihood. “With farmers and workers, we can all share.”

Posted on September 14th, 2016 by Fairtrade Yorkshire