Great Big Green Week is Here

Fairtrade campaigners across Yorkshire are getting involved in activities for the Great Big Green Week, demanding action to combat climate change, in advance of the United Nations climate change conference (COP 26) which will be held in Scotland.

The Fair Trade movement has a strong focus on sustainability. Its aim is to provide sustainable livelihoods to the benefit of poor communities and to the natural environment.

Liz Roodhouse, the coordinator of the Skipton Fair Trade Initiative, has been working alongside many partners to produce a Great Big Green Week programme in Craven District.

There is a wide variety of activities including give and take days, an incredible edible walk, green crafting and an online question and answer session on ‘Facing up to Environmental Challenges’ with Myfanwy Trueman of Craven U3A. The Facing up to Environmental Challenges event is on Tuesday 23rd September at 7.30pm on Zoom. Email for the link or for any other information about the Big Green Week activities in Craven.


Posted on September 19th, 2021 by Fairtrade Yorkshire News

Great Big Green Week cookalongs with Sandy Docherty

Former Bake Off contestant Sandy Docherty has been a staunch supporter of Fairtrade from her home near Leeds and we were delighted when she agreed to partner with one of our favourite Fairtrade brands – JTS – in a series of cookalongs during Great Big Green Week.

JTS has been working with Nature Bio, an Indian supplier of Fairtrade and organic pulses, and their new range of red lentils, toor dal and chickpeas launches this summer.

Sandy has worked up three recipes based on these ingredients, as well as some of JTS’s other great products like Kilombero rice and Meru herbs, and will introduce them in online cookalongs on three consecutive nights to mark this September’s Great Big Green Week.

They will run from 7-8pm and will be recorded and uploaded to YouTube for you to watch later if you prefer. If you would like to join and watch along with the rest of your Fairtrade group the National Campaigner Committee is working on a series of conversation cards based on the themes of Fairtrade, climate change and the role of plant based and organic diets in climate campaigning, to help spark debate within your group after the event.

You can download the recipes below:

Cheese and Lentil slice

Chickpea rissoles

A very Handy Pie Filling

Get your free tickets via eventbrite:

Book Monday 20 September – cheese and lentil slice

Book Tuesday 21 September – chickpea rissoles

Book Wednesday 22 September – very handy pie filling

Posted on September 19th, 2021 by Fairtrade Yorkshire News

COP26 position paper – Placing fairness at the heart of climate ambitions

The international community must confront trade injustice, enforce transparency and accountability in supply chains, and secure climate financing mechanisms, living incomes and wages for the world’s smallholder agricultural producers, artisans and workers in order to successfully address the climate crisis and guarantee a sustainable future for all, the world’s leading Fair Trade organizations announced today.

In a position paper released ahead of the 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference, also known as COP26, Fairtrade, the World Fair Trade Organization, and the Fair Trade Advocacy Office and 14 additional signatories from the global Fair Trade movement, have outlined the critical steps deemed necessary for achieving comprehensive climate justice, including urging the private sector to increase transparency and accountability over sustainability in supply chains; demanding strengthened environmental regulations and trade rules; and calling for facilitated access to appropriate funding mechanisms for smallholder farmers and producers.

Without these measures in place, the signatory organizations argue, the international community’s climate ambitions will continue to fail the planet’s most vulnerable communities, particularly the smallholder farmers and agricultural producers, who remain increasingly affected by the consequences of climate change.

“Our planet’s farmers and agricultural workers are on the frontline of the global climate crisis. But far from being victims, they are integral in developing those key climate solutions that can reverse environmental degradation and pave the way towards a more sustainable tomorrow,” declared Dr. Nyagoy Nyong’o, Global CEO of Fairtrade International.

“That’s why the Fair Trade movement is raising its voice in this bold position paper – to ensure farmers and agricultural workers are included in the COP26 outcomes; to guarantee fair incomes for our planet’s agricultural producers; and to build back better and greener in a post-COVID world.”

Held in Glasgow from 31 October to 12 November 2021, COP26 will bring together global leaders and leading stakeholders to discuss the international community’s climate ambitions and a pathway to building back sustainably following the ravages of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Against this backdrop, the Fair Trade movement’s position paper calls on global leaders to immediately deliver on climate targets by:

Urging governments to impose transparency and accountability measures for private sector supply chains while working to ensure sustainable livelihoods for smallholder agricultural and non-agricultural producers and workers;
Demanding facilitated access to climate finance that empowers smallholder farmers, producers, artisans, and workers to adapt and become more resilient to climate change while shifting to net zero production on-farm;
Calling on the private sector to pay “fair value, fair prices, and adhere to fair trading practices to ensure producers have the resources to make the investment needed for climate adaptation and mitigation”;
and Lobbying for binding legal framework conditions that embed the highest environmental standards into a new, sustainable global trade policy.
“An economic system that thrives on the exploitation of our planet’s resources and our planet’s people is a broken economic system,” said Juan Pablo Solís, Fairtrade’s Senior Advisor for Environment and Climate. “And climate measures that exclude fairness and climate justice from the core of their targets are measures that will once again fail to achieve real climate action. In Glasgow, global leaders will need to think inclusively if they want have meaningful impact in creating a sustainable tomorrow for all.”

Citing IFAD/CPI research, the Fair Trade movement’s COP26 position paper points out that less than 2% of climate finance makes its way to small scale farmers, adding that awarding criteria and procedures of financial mechanisms such as the Green Climate Fund must be aligned to small producers and their organizations so that they can access available funding and manage it in a non-bureaucratic way.

“Marginalised communities across the world are suffering the severest impact of climate change. Their production practices and personal choices have contributed the least to the current climate crisis but they are the most affected by it,” said Roopa Mehta, President of WFTO. “The call for climate justice requires that these communities have a seat at the negotiating table – their voices heard and their concerns addressed.”

“Fair Trade business models contribute to the prosperity and well-being of the most marginalised, ensuring trade justice,” Mehta continued. “We urge big businesses, policymakers and other stakeholders to collectively work towards trade and climate justice for building a fairer and sustainable future.” Sergi Corbalán, Managing Director of the Brussels-based Fair Trade Advocacy Office, echoed Mehta’s call.

“The world is at a crossroads and business-as-usual is simply not an option,” Corbalán stated. “Governments must take action to set the right policy framework for fair and sustainable global trade. This includes not shying away from legislating, since relaying exclusively on voluntary commitments and market forces will not bring us any closer to achieving the Agenda 2030 objectives and the Paris Agreement.”

Download the position paper:

Fair Trade Movement Position Paper

Posted on September 17th, 2021 by Fairtrade Yorkshire News

Great Big Green Week promotional materials

2021 has been all about the impact of climate change on farmers and workers and campaigners have been asking for a simple explanatory leaflet with a few statistics about the connections between Fairtrade and climate.

Download the jpeg for use on websites and social media

If you would like to print your own at home, or send them to a friendly local printer you can download them as a pdf here:

Copy of GBGW – Flyer Templates (2) (1)

Copy of GBGW – Flyer Templates (1)

Posted on September 7th, 2021 by Fairtrade Yorkshire News

How Green Is Your T Shirt? Join in our Great Big Green Week project

Climate change is the biggest challenge facing humanity.

Fairtrade Fortnight 2021 had the theme Climate, Fairtrade and You and featured a huge range of online events with a focus on how climate change is affecting farmers and workers in low income countries.

You can watch many of these events on YouTube here

Great Big Green Week 18-26 September 2021

How Green Is Your T-shirt?

The problem

The fashion industry accounts for 8% of all climate emissions, more than the entire economies of the UK, France and Germany combined. And most of it is completely unnecessary. In the UK we buy four times as much clothing as we did in the 1990s. Even then it’s estimated that around 30% of all the brand new garments in UK shops – garments made by people working for poverty wages in low income countries – is never even sold. Imagine working really hard to bake a cake, and when you hand it over, a third is simply rejected and thrown in the bin. How would that make you feel?

Climate change and fair trade are inextricably linked. The effects of climate change are being felt now in the low income countries where fair trade organisations, farmers, workers and artisans operate.

The background

In October 2019 Fairtrade Yorkshire took part in the Fairtrade Foundation’s Make Your Mark challenge, creating the Fairtrade mark in the form of a human mosaic featuring almost 200 volunteers in Hull’s Trinity Square.

The image is great and enduring. It is used regularly in Fairtrade Foundation communications. The aim was a zero waste event. Dozens of crafters were involved in knitting and crocheting hats for the volunteers, which were later donated to a local charity working with homeless ex service people. The sky blue T shirts and hats were part of the uniform of the Absolutely Cultured volunteers (a legacy of the Hull City of Culture in 2017). The black T shirts were official Fairtrade mark T shirts and have been used to great campaigning effect in the months since, including when Joanna and volunteers from York Fair Trade Forum and Fairtrade Yorkshire staged a Day of Action at the Nestle factory in York.

Photo credit: Danny Lawson/PA Wire

But the 44 green T shirts – Fairtrade cotton, sustainable and ethical but only worn once. For less than half an hour. Not sustainable. A bit of a waste. What to do?

The project

The Great Big Green Week is an initiative from the Climate Coalition – an umbrella group of organisations which campaign on climate, the environment and human rights. The Fairtrade Foundation is a member.

Groups are encouraged to host events across the week in September highlighting the need to tackle the climate emergency.

For more details visit:

How can you help?

This summer dozens of textile artists, crafters, fashion students and artisans are busy upcycling the green Fairtrade cotton T shirts to create pieces of wearable art with a message about climate change, fair trade and you.

The garments will be gathered together and styled with fair trade clothing from WFTO and BAFTS members and accessories, second hand and “model’s own” clothing – after all, the most sustainable item is one you already own. We’re recruiting a diverse cohort of models – different body shapes, race, age, disability, gender – and putting on a fashion show during the Great Big Green Week in September. The event will be livestreamed on the WFTO website and an edit will be available for supporters and campaigners to share and use in their own climate and fair trade campaigning.

You can download the project brief here:

How Green Is Your T Shirt project brief



Launch – Monday 19 April – Fashion Revolution Week

Summer – Get crafty!

31 August – deadline for return of T shirts to Joanna

Fashion Show – Saturday 18 September 6pm

Reading International Solidarity Centre

35-39 London Street



Great Big Green Week: 18-26 September

If you would like to get involved please email

For inspiration see this amazing video from charity a-dress:

Posted on August 12th, 2021 by Fairtrade Yorkshire News

Traidcraft Impact Report

Traidcraft has been one of the pioneers of fair trade since it started in 1979. Many of us first encountered fair trade at church stalls and the Traidcraft brand and business model has been strong for over 40 years in fair trade shops and community stalls around the UK.

Working with Fairtrade they have produced a really interesting report about the £23,900 in Fairtrade premiums that Traidcraft customers have generated just in the last year, how your purchases contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals and what the premium is doing in the specific area of tea.

Read the report by clicking the link below:

Traidcraft PLC Report_Public

Posted on July 27th, 2021 by Fairtrade Yorkshire News

Fairtrade banana peloton back in action as part of Cathedral Cycle Rally

Thursday 3 June was World Bicycle Day and the Fairtrade Yorkshire banana peloton – famous from this video from the Tour de France’s visit to Yorkshire in 2014  was back in action as part of a 20 strong cycle relay on the leg between Bradford Cathedral and Wakefield Cathedral. The journey is part of the Cathedrals Cycle Route which takes in over 2,000 miles and visits all 42 of England’s Anglican cathedrals. The circular route starts and ends at Newcastle Cathedral with Truro as the furthest point to the South. Yorkshire is well represented with Ripon, York, Bradford, Wakefield and Sheffield Cathedrals all featuring.

The photo above was taken at Wakefield Cathedral and shows the Dean of Wakefield Cathedral greeting the Fairtrade banana (our friend Mike de Villiers of Baildon Fairtrade). The ride was part of a relay of cyclists aiming to visit all 42 cathedrals in 42 days. The baton passed from Bradford to Wakefield and on to Sheffield and beyond.

For more information about the route see the Cycling UK website.

And if this story has inspired to join in with others on long distance routes you can join the Young Christian Climate Network on their walk from the G7 in Cornwall to COP26 in Glasgow.

The route takes in walking routes between Sheffield, Marsden, Huddersfield, Leeds Tadcaster, York and Ripon in September.

Click here to seethe route and join them if you can.


Posted on July 12th, 2021 by Fairtrade Yorkshire News

Fair Trade and Local Farming – new report

WFTO Europe has been working on a project to see how the fair trade principles can be used to support local farmers in Europe.

This is the report they have produced:


Posted on June 7th, 2021 by Fairtrade Yorkshire News

You can help fund Bruce Crowther MBE’s new book

Photo © Johnny Bean (

As well as being the father of the Fair Trade Towns movement, Bruce Crowther is a great friend of Fairtrade Yorkshire. As part of our Fairtrade Connections festival he was in conversation with Kirklees Libraries Writer in Residence, Christina Longden talking about his approach to writing about his long life in campaigning.

You can watch the conversation here 

At the time we suggested that Bruce should crowdfund the publication of the book, and we’re delighted that he has decided to do it. He plans to launch the book on Monday 22 November – the 20th anniversary of the date Garstang started the whole Fair Trade Towns movement.

But before that he has until 30 June to raise £1,900 in order to publish the book and get it out there. So now you can be part of the project and help Bruce reach his target of £1,900 to print and publish “Not in my lifetime – a campaigner’s journal” by donating to the Kickstarter. There’s a range of rewards for those who pledge and any money left over will be donated to good causes with a fair trade theme.

Click here to Pledge now

Posted on June 1st, 2021 by Fairtrade Yorkshire News

World Fair Trade Day 8 May 2021 – Build Back Fairer

World Fair Trade Day is a great opportunity for Fairtrade communities to take action away from the main UK Fairtrade Fortnight activities.

Co-ordinated by the World Fair Trade Organisation,  World Fair Trade day happens on the second Saturday in May every year. As well as the farmers and workers who grow and make the Fairtrade marked products we celebrate during Fairtrade Fortnight, the focus is on the organisations who are part of the wider fair trade movement, as members of WFTO itself or network members like BAFTS – Fair Trade Network UK. The artisans and producers who make these mainly hand crafted products, from clothing and accessories to home and garden ornaments are a key part of the move towards a fairer world. You may remember the CEO of the WFTO Erinch Sahan was the keynote speaker at the Fairtrade Yorkshire Conference in October 2020 so we have a great connection from our region to the wider fair trade movement.

World Fair Trade Day will see a Europe-wide campaign celebrating the fair trade outlets in your local area under the banner “Fair Trade Local”. We’re asking people to take photos 0utside their local fair trade shop and upload them to social media with the hashtag #FairTradeLocal. We’re also asking you to contact your local MP or mayor and ask them to take a photo with the poster reading “Build Back Fairer”, then send them to the WFTO for inclusion in their gallery.

Here’s our Co-ordinator and newly elected Chair of the National Campaigner Committee sharing her message.

Get the email template and instructions

There are social media assets for you to download here.

Download the poster here.

Watch the Build Back Fairer campaign video here and via the Fairtrade Yorkshire YouTube channel



Posted on April 12th, 2021 by Fairtrade Yorkshire News