All Posts By

Steve Mauger

Events News

Fairtrade Guernsey Beach Art Installation…….Be a womble…..

We will be creating a beach art installation at the Vazon Beach Clean to celebrate the 25th Anniversary of the Fairtrade Mark.

Meet @ 3.00 p.m., Saturday 21 September (Fort Houmet headland).

Please bring any litter you collect between now and then from any of your wombling adventures to add to the artwork. (Gloves provided).

FREE Fairtrade refreshments, but bring your own cup.

Fairtrade Beach Clean

 

Featured Products

FAIRPHONE LAUNCHES FAIRPHONE 3 TO SHOW THERE IS A REAL SUSTAINABLE SMARTPHONE ALTERNATIVE

Dutch social enterprise Fairphone have announced the launch of their latest smartphone: the Fairphone 3. The new, improved modular phone builds on the company’s previous achievements to deliver a sleek and durable device that closes the gap between performance and sustainability.

The phone is made with responsibly sourced and conflict-free tin and tungsten, recycled copper and plastics, and sources Fairtrade gold.

Fairphone was the first electronics manufacturer to integrate Fairtrade gold into its supply chain. Fairtrade gold drives environmental benefits for miners and their communities and delivers a Fair Price and Premium for re-investment into mine and community projects.

Fairphone is also in the process of setting up an initiative for better sourcing of cobalt, the key mineral for the energy transition.

https://www.fairtrade.org.uk/Media-Centre/News/Fairphone-launches-Fairphone-3-to-show-there-is-a-real-sustainable-smartphone-alternative

News Products

Are palm oil products bad? What is palm oil and why sustainable palm oil from Ghana and Ecuador is the future…..

Do you avoid products which contain palm oil? How much do you know about sustainable palm oil and how much it differs from regular palm oil? What is FairPalm? To clue yourself up, read on…

You’ll have heard a lot about palm oil on the news recently, but what is palm oil? Are palm oil products bad? And is it possible to buy sustainable palm oil products instead?

At 66 million tons annually, palm oil is the most commonly produced vegetable oil and can be found in almost half of our everyday purchases. Palm oil products are found in every corner of your home, and is hidden away in shampoo, toothpaste, lipstick, and candles as well as everyday foods such as bread, chocolate and instant noodles.

Much of the palm oil we consume every day isn’t sustainable. Big brands understand that people are trying to avoid palm oil, so it’s often hidden in lists of ingredients under different names such as ‘vegetable oil’, or ‘vegetable fat’. Oil palm plantations are developed in low lying, wet, tropical areas – where rainforests and peatland grow and endangered species such as orangutans and tigers live. Clearing for oil palm plantations is devastating for wildlife, habitats, people and climate change.

The good news is we don’t have to avoid all products with palm oil. Some companies source sustainable palm oil, made with respect for the environment and local communities.

Palm oil’s popularity in the manufacturing world is partly due to its high yield. Whilst sunflower oil yields 0.7 tonnes of oil per hectare (and other comparable oils result in similar figures), palm oil yields 3.8 tonnes of oil per hectare. So to acquire 1 tonne of oil, you’d need to farm far fewer palm trees and less land.*

There are areas in the world where palm trees are native, or where they’re farmed mixed cropping. These palm forests provide a home for local wildlife, and can continue to provide a major part of the economy for local people, lifting them out of poverty.

In 2013, Traidcraft joined with the Serendipalm co-operative in Ghana and Natural Habitats in Ecuador to produce Fairtrade, organic palm oil in a way that supports smallholder growers and allows the palm plants to grow naturally.

The palm plants are separated with cocoa trees and natural flora. Both Serendipalm and Natural Habitats are committed to fair trade and organic practices, and support the growers with agricultural training and health care. Neither group use any chemical nasties to increase production or reduce pests – they use organic methods and encourage the palm fruits to grow at their own pace.

Traidcraft called this new oil FairPalm, and used it for its eco-friendly cleaning products and its delicious fair trade biscuits.

Traidcraft mixed together FairPalm, Fairtrade coconut oil from India, and a bouquet of natural essential oils to create Clean & Fair, the world’s first Fairtrade cleaning range. Not only does every purchase of Clean & Fair ensure that growers are paid fairly, communities are given a Fairtrade premium to spend on local initiatives and conserving the environment.

So, are palm oil products bad? They definitely can be. But by buying sustainable palm oil products like that from Ghana and Ecuador, you can help the environment and people in local communities to flourish.

*Figures from European Palm Oil Alliance, 2016

https://www.traidcraftshop.co.uk/blogpost/are-palm-oil-products-bad-what-is-palm-oil-and-why-sustainable-palm-oil-from-ghana-and-ecuador-is-the-future-216-216.html?utm_campaign=1069611_Tuesday%2027-08-2019%20-%20MO%20OLD&utm_medium=email&utm_source=EDM&dm_i=4EDA,MXBF,238P6X,2OZ2O,1

Featured News

How coffee farming is supporting the indigenous population of Guatemala……

In Guatemala, indigenous people make up around 40% of the population, most of whom are of Mayan descent.

Social and economic inequality is widespread among indigenous people in Guatemala and the majority work on small-scale coffee farms. The country’s main exports are coffee beans, sugar and bananas. Historically, Guatemala’s coffee exports have been dominated by large foreign-owned plantations rather than small coffee farms, which has meant that the exporter or the intermediary can take advantage of the farmers, pushing down prices for their crops, often leaving them in poverty and with few other options but to sell up and migrate.

That’s why many co-operatives and small coffee producers team up, like the 20,000 small coffee producers who market their coffee through the Federación de Pequeños Productores de Café de Guatemala (also known as FEDECOCAGUA R.L.). This organisation consists of 148 different co-operatives and it gives farmers better access to global and direct trade. As a result, around 50% of all coffee produced in the country is now from small family-owned coffee farms.

These farmers are now paid fairly for their work and, by creating a community based on fair trade and social inclusion, they are able to work collaboratively whilst maintaining independence.

Read more at: https://www.fairtrade.org.uk/

About us News Supporters

Celebrating 25 years of Fairtrade

Have you heard? It’s been 25 years since the FAIRTRADE Mark was launched in the UK and Fairtrade Community groups like Guernsey have been at the very centre of its success.

Together we’ve managed to spread its message of fairness far and wide. There are now more than 600 Fairtrade Communities in the UK and more than 2,000 globally. Join us this autumn in celebrating your achievements

News

£300m for Fairtrade

Daily Mail, Tuesday, May 28, 2019:

THE Co-op supermarket group has raised £300m to boost Fairtrade products.

It has issued ‘sustainability bonds’ to spend on marketing the Fairtrade brand and distribution.

The bonds, paying annual interest of 5.1pc, will raise money for ethical causes.

Future bonds could raise cash for its academies trust, which runs schools; efforts to reduce water poverty and environmentally-friendly technology.

News

Worried about wildlife? Sustainable agriculture could be the answer…..

by Marika McAlevey, Fairtrade Sweden

Earth’s species are dying out faster than ever before, according to a new UN report. It’s clearly a global crisis – but it also directly affects us in our own local environment. We have to find a way to halt this catastrophic crisis in nature, and sustainable agriculture could provide the answer.

The report warns of a so-called “sixth mass extinction” of plant and animal life, with up to one million species disappearing in the coming decades. Human activity has degraded three-quarters of the world’s land surface and two-thirds of marine environments. According to WWF, wildlife has already declined by as much as 60 percent since 1970. If we don’t act fast, it’s not just nature that is under threat – human survival is also at stake.

Nature’s problem is our problem

Without thriving biodiversity, we will have no clean water, no food on the table, no access to medicines and energy. The crisis of nature is also an economic, security and social crisis, which is particularly acute for the quarter of the global population who depend on agriculture for their livelihoods. Farmers and farm workers are already suffering from degraded soil, desertification, salt water pollution, soil erosion and excessive use of toxic pesticides.

If we are to protect nature, we have to change the way we farm our land and produce our food. Vast areas of monoculture crops which ruthlessly eliminate all other biodiversity are unnatural and risk destroying local ecosystems, leading to the extinction of both animal and plant species. Reintroducing crop diversity and sustainable farming methods will have positive long-term impacts. For example, planting trees to act as shade over sun-sensitive crops saves water as well as helping local ecosystems to flourish. Rejecting the use of toxic pesticides while embracing organic farming, together with innovative techniques for producing more food from smaller plots, can all help slow the loss of nature. Fairtrade’s environmental standards, for example, prohibit cutting down protected forests in order to plant more crops – a major problem in much of West Africa where cocoa production is a well-known driver of deforestation. If cocoa farmers were able to earn a decent income by producing more from their existing plots, they would have less incentive to destroy irreplaceable woodland.

Small steps make a big difference

It is depressingly self-evident that we humans can destroy entire ecosystems with our major industries, our over-consumption and our unsustainable farming practices. More encouragingly, however, many of us are creating new ecosystems – albeit on a smaller scale – in our own back yards. Simple tricks include growing pollen-rich flowers, building bug hotels or letting the grass grow wild to replace fast-disappearing wild flower meadows. By encouraging a rich biodiversity to thrive in our own gardens, we benefit the wider ecosystem.

Similarly, we need to encourage individual small-scale farmers and growers to adopt more environmentally-friendly agriculture. Restoring habitats helps create a more favourable social and economic environment in the long term, and increases the chances of a stable, sustainable income for farmers and their families. It also reduces growers’ vulnerability to extreme weather and climate shocks. Using fewer chemicals has both human and environmental benefits, whilst planting more trees helps absorb carbon dioxide and reduces the huge impact of agriculture on the climate. But changing the farming habits of a lifetime can be daunting and may involve short-term costs. Consumers, businesses and governments all have a part to play in encouraging farmers by showing there is a significant demand for sustainably produced food.

Where does Fairtrade fit in?

Fairtrade mainly certifies small-scale farmers who sign up to rigorous standards, which include environmental criteria such as banning the use of harmful pesticides. Fairtrade also organises training for farmers so they can learn how to grow in harmony with the local environment and avoid creating monocultures. Many producers also invest their Fairtrade Premium – the extra money they get for selling on Fairtrade terms – in various projects aimed at restoring natural areas or reforestation. Fairtrade is a choice for nature, and a way of farming that safeguards both humans and the environment.

Photos: © Fairtrade International / Linus Hallgren