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Waveney gears up for Fairtrade fortnight

PUBLISHED: 11:02 19 February 2009 | UPDATED: 22:32 05 July 2010

FAIRTRADE Fortnight begins on Monday and everybody is encouraged to show their support for small producers in developing countries.

Fairtrade groups in Beccles and Lowestoft will join in the national Fairtrade Fortnight campaign by promoting the cause, canvassing public opinion on Fairtrade products, organising events and offering samples to try and taste.

FAIRTRADE Fortnight begins on Monday and everybody is encouraged to show their support for small producers in developing countries.

Fairtrade groups in Beccles and Lowestoft will join in the national Fairtrade Fortnight campaign by promoting the cause, canvassing public opinion on Fairtrade products, organising events and offering samples to try and taste.

Councillor Mark Bee, leader of Waveney District Council, said: “Waveney is in the enviable position of having two Fairtrade towns. Members of the Fairtrade Steering Groups in both Beccles and Lowestoft have put in a lot of hard work to demonstrate their town's support for Fairtrade Fortnight. I would like to encourage as many people as possible to get behind the campaign and choose Fairtrade.

“Across the district, cafes, restaurants and shops big and small will be promoting the wealth of Fairtrade products available. Please take this opportunity to try them. It could change your buying habits and in turn create positive change for some of the world's poorer producers.”

Wendy Moxon, co-ordinator of Beccles Fairtrade Town Steering Group, added: “As a Fairtrade town, Beccles has a good percentage of retail outlets, cafes and businesses committed to offering Fairtrade goods to both their customers and employees.

“We wanted to raise the profile of Fairtrade in the town and will be ensuring that residents receive a special leaflet promoting Fairtrade Fortnight. It details the shops and cafes in Beccles offering Fairtrade products and households in the Beccles area should receive one with their local free paper on 27 February.

“Anna Ribenfors, who attended Sir John Lehman High School's sixth form last year, won a design competition to produce the cover and she has done a fantastic job in helping us make people take notice.

“In order to gauge support for Fairtrade products, the Fairtrade cafes in Beccles will be conducting a customer survey during the second week. The results will help us with future initiatives.

“In addition, the Traidcraft stall sells Fairtrade goods at Hungate Church between 10am and noon, every Friday. During Fairtrade Fortnight, it will have samples for its customers to try.”

In Lowestoft, local supermarkets will be hosting Fairtrade displays, promoting the Fairtrade products on offer on their shelves: Co-op, Ashburnham Way; Asda, Belvedere Road; Morrisons, Tower Road and Tesco, Leisure Way. The Co-op will also have offers on some Fairtrade products.

Jo Knight, from Lowestoft's Fairtrade Steering Group said: “We'd like to thank the stores for helping us highlight Fairtrade products and enabling us to show the people of Lowestoft just what's available on the shelves. Leaflets on display will tell the stories of people in Fairtrade co-operatives and how it has changed their lives for the better. There is also a Fairtrade Directory in outlets across Lowestoft, detailing the many stockists of Fairtrade Products.

“The town's main push will take place shortly after Fairtrade Fortnight, on March 14, from 10am to 3 pm, at Stella Maris Hall, Gordon Road, Lowestoft.

“At this annual event, we will be encouraging shoppers to make regular purchases from across the Fairtrade range. A large selection of Fairtrade items will be available from Traidcraft and Tearcraft, as well as other fair and ethically trading companies such as the Quays of Oulton Broad. Visitors will be able to purchase jewellery, clothes, cards and wrapping, children's gifts, food, confectionary and a whole lot more.

“There will also be refreshments available and homemade light lunches such as soup, ploughman's and a children's option. The proceeds from refreshments as well the small entry fee (20p or donation), plus the profits from the day, will go to the appeal for street children in Uganda in East Africa.”

Nationally, the campaign is promoting a world record attempt for the number of people, simultaneously eating Fairtrade bananas. This will take place between noon on Friday, March 6 and noon on Saturday, March 7. People are being encouraged to pledge to eat a Fairtrade banana during this time. You can register online at www.fairtrade.org.uk/gobananas

For more information on Fairtrade Fortnight events in Waveney visit www.waveney.gov.uk and click on the banner on the homepage. You can also find more information on Fairtrade and the cause behind it at www.fairtrade.org.uk

Fairtrade leaflets are also available at all Waveney District Council offices during Fairtrade Fortnight.

For more information on Fairtrade in Beccles call 01502 712 800.

For more information on Fairtrade in Lowestoft call 01502 572 429.

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