Launch of Three Rivers as a Fairtrade district

Kevin Snow11th May 2008

Fairtrade supporters from throughout Three Rivers gathered in the Council Chamber last Friday (9 May) to celebrate the launch of Three Rivers as a Fairtrade District. The award was made earlier this year and this was an opportunity for all those involved to mark the occasion. Community organisations, faith groups, shops, businesses and schools from throughout the district who had pledged to do what they could for Fairtrade were represented. They enjoyed a special celebration cake made from Fairtrade ingredients and a glass of wine – Fairtrade of course!

Hannah Reed of the Fairtrade Foundation cuts the celebration cake, watched by Councillor Amrit Mediratta, Chairman of TRDC, and Jane Brading from the Three Rivers Fairtrade Group.Chairman of Three Rivers District Council , Councillor Amrit Mediratta , paid tribute to the Fairtrade movement and to the local campaigners. Hannah Reed, Fairtrade Towns Campaign Co-ordinator from the Fairtrade Foundation, then congratulated Three Rivers and spoke of the crucial role played by the Fairtrade towns initiative. There are now over 300 Fairtrade areas in the UK and the phenomenon has now spread to 15 other countries around the world, all inspired by the UK’s example.

Jane Brading, speaking of the local Fairtrade Group, thanked all those who had worked so hard to achieve Fairtrade status for the district. Jane and her husband Phil recently visited two Fairtrade producers in Chile where they saw for themselves the benefits which Fairtrade brings to the farmers and their families. They met wine growers from Los Robles and the honey producers at Apicoop, both in remote areas where some of the poorest people live. The fair price they receive for their produce means they can invest for the future, by improving their agriculture and by giving their children a better education.

Jane Brading, of Three Rivers Fairtrade Group, said:

‘By choosing to support Fairtrade Three Rivers has added its voice to demands for a trade system that puts people, not profit, at the heart of the transaction. It sends a powerful message about how our community wants trade to work.’