Today’s the first day of Fairtrade Fortnight. We can enjoy two fantastic weeks when community groups, schools, businesses, NGOs and faith groups all come together to show their support for the farmers and workers who grow our food, often in developing countries like Malawi.
Fairtrade Fortnight is important. Millions of farmers around the world aren’t paid what they deserve and these two weeks are a key moment to help raise awareness of this injustice.
Alongside Fairtrade fortnight, and working closely with the Scottish Fair Trade Forum, we’ve launched the #BuyMalawian2017 campaign. For the next 6 weeks we’re getting out there and encouraging Scots to buy Malawian products.
Why? I hear you ask.
Well, first off, it’s nothing new. When David Livingstone first arrived in what became Malawi over 150 years ago, beginning the Scotland-Malawi friendship, he aimed to help support sustainable economic development by opening new trade routes and fighting against the slave trade.
The slave trade may, thankfully, be largely consigned to history but the need for a strong Malawian economy is more important than ever. And so we look to continue this mission in 2017 by helping build Scottish markets for fantastic Malawian products, many of which are fair trade or fairly traded.
We hope that, if successful, this can become an annual campaign to promote Malawian produce and support sustainable economic development, linked to Fair Trade Fortnight and David Livingstone’s birthday on the 19th March.
To help us launch the campaign this year, we’re giving Scots the chance to win an amazing holiday to Malawi which has been generously donated by tourism operators in Malawi.
As part of the campaign we’re promoting sixteen Malawian products available in the UK (let us know if we’ve missed any!), five of which are Fairtrade certified:
- Traidcraft Mzuzu coffee
- Liberation nuts
- Liberation peanut butter
- Ubuntu cola
- Fairbreak choc chip cookies
We’re keen to especially push these products during Fairtrade Fortnight. Buying these brilliant products will ensure the farmers in Malawi earn a fair wage.
McDonald Nguluwe, a coffee farmer in Malawi, said: “I am so proud that, because of my coffee income, I have been able to send all of my children to school in Mzuzu. You know we are a nation of farmers. Most Malawians grow just enough maize for the needs of their family. For years our country has grown tobacco but now the prices are so low. Coffee revenues pay for our daily needs and give us hope.”
So, next time you’re shopping, why not look out for the special Fairtrade kite-mark and support the farmers around the world who deserve better.