Fairtrade Fortnight: How you can get involved

Running from February 21st to March 6th each, thousands of companies and groups come together across the UK to provide a voice to the people who grow our food, cotton and mine our gold. Often these people are overworked and underpaid. Therefore, it is more important than ever to educate ourselves in order to power long-term change and achieve equality for all in the face of the climate crisis.

How does Fairtrade help?

Fairtrade is a set of standards aimed to provide fair pay, safe working conditions and rights to farmers and workers across the globe. For consumers, it means ethically sourced, high-quality products. When you choose a Fairtrade product, you’re choosing to support this idea. Fairtrade also fights the climate crisis as it means sustainable trade. Sustainability prevents the depletion of natural, finite resources by replacing them with ethical farming techniques. This reduces our carbon footprint and lessens our impact on the planet.

Some of the largest companies supporting this movement include Starbucks, which is the largest purchaser of Fairtrade coffee in the world. Starbucks are offering 50p off of beverages during the fortnight. Sainbury’s, which is the world’s largest retailer for Fairtrade products, will also be running promotions on these items, along with the Co-operative which will be doing the same. Ben and Jerry’s are also offering £1 off their ice cream when you use the Fairtrade Fortnight voucher (available on their website!). Make your voice heard by supporting these campaigns and motivating other companies to make a change.

What can you do?

But how can you get involved? In the modern-day we are more connected than ever, the most efficient way to spread the word is to share on social media. Linked here is the Fairtrade Fortnight research library: https://www.fairtrade.org.uk/resources-library/current-campaigns/fairtrade-and-the-climate-crisis/ This is packed full of pre-made, factually correct resources for you to incorporate into your daily life and share to your platforms, societies and course mates!

Here are some tips to support the movement in your everyday life and work towards a sustainable future.

  1. Choose products with the Fairtrade logo. When you do this you’re telling corporations you want sustainability and equality and they will change in response to this in order to drive sales. There are over 6,000 Fairtrade products of a huge variety, making committing to change extremely easy.
  2. Stop shopping fast fashion. Fast fashion is one of the leading culprits for exploiting workers in inhumane conditions and destroying the planet for a quick sale. Vogue magazine commented in 2021 that over 100 billion items clothing items are produced each year, enough for 14 per person on the planet. However, 3 out of 5 of these pieces will end up in landfill within the year. To prevent this number from skyrocketing even higher, try to make mindful choices about clothing and invest in pieces you will keep for a lifetime. Second-hand clothing sites like Depop and Vinted also give clothes a second lease of life!
  3. Save energy. By using less energy you are reducing your carbon footprint by decreasing emissions. There are numerous simple and easy ways to do this, from turning off standby appliances, putting on an extra layer instead of the heating or drying your clothes in the sun rather than the drier. All of these are small things that add up to a big change!
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