Arundel is celebrating after successfully renewing its status as a Fairtrade Town through the Fairtrade Foundation.
Arundel was the first town in West Sussex to gain Fairtrade status back in 2004 and to achieve recertification, progress in promoting Fairtrade had to be shown. These efforts included:
- Arundel Town Council passing a resolution showing continued support for Fairtrade, also now including the provision of Fairtrade wine at Arundel Town Hall Cinema Club and other council functions, and also for the councillors to act as informal ambassadors for Fairtrade.
- Demonstrating that Fairtrade products are available in even more local shops and catering outlets. A recent survey carried out by Arundel Fairtrade Town Group showed there are now 12 retail outlets offering Fairtrade products (up from 4 in 2004) and 9 catering outlets (also up from 4 in 2004).
- Local community organisations showing support for Fairtrade and making such products available to their members. All three churches in Arundel have shown a commitment in this area and both of the Arundel primary schools are also now working towards Fairtrade School status.
- Continuing to attract media coverage and popular support for the Fairtrade campaign, primarily through the annual Arundel Fairtrade & Ethical Fair. Now an established event in the town's calendar which has grown in recent years to host some 50 stalls and attracts a great many visitors from across the region. Its success is due largely to the generosity of the Duke and Duchess of Norfolk who support Arundel's Fairtrade Town status by allowing use of the Castle for this event.
The Arundel Fairtrade Town Group, in conjunction with Arundel Agenda 21, have also produced an updated town brochure listing all the local retailers, catering outlets and community organisations that have demonstrated support for Fairtrade, sustainable and organic products. The brochure is widely available in the town.
Georgina, Duchess of Norfolk commented “I am pleased that the Arundel Fairtrade and Agenda 21 Groups are working to promote sustainability and justice. As Patron of both of these groups, I endorse their efforts to raise these issues, and hope others will support them too.“
Going forward the Arundel Fairtrade Town Group are looking to expand their campaign by working more closely with younger people in the area and engaging them with the Fairtrade campaign. This year also sees the launch of the Fairtrade Foundation “Take a Step” campaign, which aims to record 1.5 million steps for Fairtrade by the end of 2012. Each step will support farmers and workers to take their own steps towards a brighter future. A step can be anything done to support Fairtrade such as:
- Inviting a friend out for a Fairtrade coffee
- Organising a Fairtrade chocolate tasting at school or a club
- Telling your friends on Facebook about your favourite Fairtrade product
- Buying Fairtrade tea bags when it’s your turn at work
- Joining your local campaign group
- Asking your local shop to stock more Fairtrade choices
All of these steps can be recorded at the Fairtrade Foundation “Take a Step” website
Published 24th February 2012
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