Fairtrade is a worldwide movement, which is working to alleviate poverty. As its name suggests, Fairtrade operates by ensuring that small producers in underdeveloped countries receive a fair price when they trade their goods. Fairtrade then promotes these products using the Fairtrade Mark.
The Fairtrade Mark is a trademark which guarantees that
- a fair price has been given to the producer,
- the quality of the product is high,
- the product has been produced in a sustainable manner, that does not damage or deplete the environment,
- the working conditions of the workers are good .
Fairtrade is a matter of Justice.
The progressive growth of global trade has worked against the interests of the poorest, most vulnerable people on the planet by causing job losses, inequality of income, and environmental damage. As a result, despite all the developments and progress in the world over the past fifty years, families go hungry, children die of malnutrition, small farmers are forced off their lands, and Third World Countries are in financial crisis.
The Fairtrade movement contributes to restoring justice, and lays down, for the present and for the future, the fundamental principle that producers should always receive a fair price for a responsibly produced product. By our buying products carrying the Fairtrade Mark, we can be sure that we are not supporting exploitative companies, and on the other hand we are supporting marginalised producers in a manner that promotes their dignity and self-sufficiency.
What can each of us do?
- Buy Fairtrade products;
- Ask for Fairtrade products in shops, supermarkets, restaurants and hotels;
- Request shops to stock the Fairtrade goods you require;
- Tell your friends about Fairtrade;
- Promote Fairtrade in your workplace.
Where can I get Fairtrade Products?
Complete information on Irish sources and suppliers is available at Fairtrade Ireland
Ballineaspaig Parish, Cork is a Fairtrade Parish:
What does that mean?
As a parish community we in Ballineaspaig Parish became Ireland’s first Fairtrade Parish in September 2006. This followed a couple of years of preparation, and promotion in the parish area, to meet the criteria set out by Fairtrade Ireland. The Parish Pastoral Council passed this resolution:
- fully supports Fairtrade;
- will use Fairtrade products wherever possible at its meetings and in the parish;
- encourages every parishioner and other Group, using the parish Crypt and Parish Centre, to do likewise; and
- will continue to promote Fairtrade among parishioners and throughout the parish.
The parish Faith in Action Group spreads information on Fairtrade and Fairtrade products and their availability, among parishioners through the Bulletin, talks, raffles, quizzes, and notices in the Church. The schools in the parish have been encouraged to become Fairtrade Schools. Supermarkets and restaurants are urged to stock Fairtrade products. And there is a special focus on the Fairtrade movement during the national Fairtrade Fortnight each year.
In 2014 there was a big drive to remind everyone in the Parish about Fair Trade. A Special Bulletin “Where were you on 23rd September, 2006?“ was published in February, seven years since we first became a Fair Trade Parish. It was a appropriate time to promote renewal of our commitment as Fair Trade Fortnight approaches (24th February – 9th March)
In the autumn a blitz of every business in the Parish took place, handing out poster, leaflets and encouragement, reminding them of the importance and benefits of Fair Trade.