As part of Fairtrade Fortnight between 25th February and 10th March, local MP, David Rutley, joined members of Macclesfield Fair Trade Town Group, and the Mayor of Macclesfield, Cllr Adam Schofield and the Deputy Mayor of Cheshire East, Cllr Liz Durham, for its popular coffee morning.
The well-attended event provided an important opportunity to highlight the many benefits of supporting Fairtrade producers, who receive a fair price for the food they grow, helping to support them and their families and communities, and promote more sustainable economic growth in less economically developed developing countries across the world. There was a particular focus for this year’s Fairtrade Fortnight on the pressures faced by cocoa farmers, the great majority of whom find it challenging to make a living from their produce. A new campaign, ‘She Deserves a Living Income’, has been launched to improve the lives of cocoa farmers, particularly women working in the sector, and the coffee morning was addressed by local fair trade supporter, Karen Downard, who spoke about her experiences of visiting cocoa farmers in Ghana, and how those who grow Fairtrade products benefit from this.
David also had the pleasure of once again presenting awards for the impressive entries to the Fairtrade Schools’ Poster competition. Many local schools took part in the competition, and this year’s winner was the Year 2 class from Ash Grove School, who were represented by pupils Lance Searle and Noah Clare. All the posters submitted to the competition were on display in the Gallery at Macclesfield Library throughout Fairtrade Fortnight.
Once again supported by the Co-op, this was the 25th year of Fairtrade Fortnight, and it continues to go from strength to strength. Locally, the Macclesfield Fairtrade Town Group was set up in 2001, and has been instrumental in driving positive change to promote Fairtrade products in the town. Macclesfield has been a Fairtrade town since 2006, and the diversity and range of Fairtrade products available locally continues to expand. Any local residents interested in getting involved with the Group’s Working or Steering Group can get in touch for further information at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Speaking after the event, David said, “As ever, it was good to join Macclesfield Fairtrade Town Group for the coffee morning, which has once again helped to promote the many benefits of Fairtrade. It is great to see our town continuing to play its part in supporting these important initiatives, and I hope many more local residents will support the Group’s aims going forward.”