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FAIRTRADE REACTION TO COP26 FINAL COMMUNIQUE

13 November, 2021
Responding to the final communique of the COP26 summit, Fairtrade’s Head of Delegation for COP26 and Kenyan flower farmer, Mary Kinyua, said:

“This COP’s outcome is in many ways a cop out, a frustrating conclusion to this summit filled with hope that we would see a start to the healing of our world.

“As farmers ourselves, representing 1.8 million Fairtrade farmers and workers across the world already living with the devastating realities of climate change, we came to Glasgow in good faith, hoping our world leaders would listen to our voices and keep their promises. Our message – of ensuring the planet temperature rise remains within 1.5 degrees and that the costs of addressing a changing climate would not be unfairly placed on those of us who did the least to cause it – could not have been clearer.

“It is hard to understand why the prospect of a 2.4 degree temperature rise has not driven world governments to deliver on the promises made in Paris. It is hard to understand why the climate finance promise of $100 billion per year is still outstanding. It is painful to see that no commitment at all has been made to pay for the unavoidable loss and damage faced by our communities.

“Of course we have seen some welcome moves. The speed at which our climate is changing makes it vital that governments will be asked to raise their commitments again in Cairo next year, rather than waiting for another five years. Promises on deforestation are critical for millions like me for whom farming is a way of life, and the announcement of a ‘Just Rural Transition Fund’ is an encouraging move. The key will be ensuring these new funds are delivered as promised, and that they actually reach farmers and our communities in low-income countries, and reaches them swiftly.

“Fairtrade farmers and citizens of the global Fairtrade movement will not let this stand. We are already working to tackle the climate crisis on the frontline in our communities, with the knowledge and love of the land that we have as farmers. And we know that there are Fairtrade buyers and businesses and supporters who will stand with us, working alongside us day to day to do what we can and calling for action until promises are finally kept. We are doing our part, it’s time for the leaders to do theirs.”

Mary Kinyua is a Fairtrade flower farmer from Kenya. She is the Fairtrade International board representative to COP26, and represented Fairtrade International on the UK CSO & Youth Advisory Council, convened by Alok Sharma MP as part of the preparations for COP26.

ENDS: For more information contact Tomilola Ajayi: tomilola.ajayi@fairtrade.org.uk

About Fairtrade – Fairtrade changes the way trade works by putting farmers and workers first. That means better prices, decent working conditions and more trade power for small-scale producers. Leading by example, Fairtrade has producers represented in 50% of its governance. Fairtrade International is an independent non-profit organization representing 1.8 million farmers and workers worldwide. It owns the FAIRTRADE Mark, a registered trademark appearing on more than 30,000 products, which is the most recognized and trusted sustainability label in the world. Fairtrade International and its member organisations collaborate with businesses, engage shoppers, activate civil society, and enable producers to take control in order to bring about a fair, sustainable future — a future rooted in social justice.

News

Fairtrade farmers comment on COP26

We caught up with three Fairtrade farmers who have been at the COP26 UN Climate Summit throughout

Rachel, Muniraju, Bismark and 1.8 million Fairtrade farmers and workers around the world have led the Be Fair With Your Climate Promise challenge.

We need to keep up the pressure on politicians and business leaders.

Pictured top to bottom: Bismark Kpabitey, a Fairtrade cocoa farmer from Ghana, Rachel Banda, a Fairtrade sugar farmer from Malawi, and Muniraju Shivanna,  a Fairtrade sugar farmer in India.

Pressure to keep the promises they make. And where the agreement falls short, we’ll need to double our efforts to convince those in power that there’s no alternative to bold action now.

It has been so important to have Fairtrade farmers like Rachel, Muniraju and Bismark at COP26. Because for them, the climate crisis is a real and immediate threat to their livelihoods – and their communities, in Malawi, India and Ghana respectively.

Bismark says “We, the producers, are already committed on the ground, trying to make things happen… to adapt to the climate issues.”

If politicians at COP26 deliver on their promises to spend more money scaling up projects like the excellent reforestation work Bismark specialises in, farmers like him around the world could do even more to tackle the climate crisis.

A strong, committed global Fairtrade community, led by farmers and workers, is what made it possible for Rachel, Muniraju and Bismark to make their voices heard at COP26. Thank you for being part of that community.

Events News

The Business Pledge…….

The Business Pledge

Businesses sourcing from Fairtrade farmers see the climate crisis hitting the people in their supply chains disproportionately hard. Increasingly volatile and extreme weather is damaging crops and harming livelihoods in farming communities, making it harder to grow the goods their customers rely on.

This is an emergency. Unless we clamp down hard on global emissions and support farmers in low- and middle-income countries to build resilience, all of us will suffer, from farmers to consumers. Businesses are urging world governments to listen to the voices of farmers – the people who grow our food and other essential goods – as they call for urgent action at COP26. We welcome the open letter from the representatives of 1.8 million Fairtrade farmers and workers across the world and urge governments to respond in full.

Governments must set ambitious, science-based rules and targets that do not allow unscrupulous businesses to ignore the damage they are causing to the planet, and which encourage responsible businesses to do more.

Business too must take a lead. They now commit ourselves to the following action in their international supply chains, and call on other businesses to do likewise.
* We promise to pay fair prices to producers – farmers and workers should not have to choose between tackling poverty and building resilience to the climate crisis. Our Fairtrade commitments are critical to achieving this.
* We promise to be long-term partners with farming communities, listening to the experience of farmers, sharing our expertise and investing in the urgent transitions farmers need. We back a shift in food production and supply, to one that is resilient to the changing climate, including backing nature-based solutions. We will support farmers as we work together to cut the emissions embedded throughout our supply chains.
* We promise to ‘know and show’ our climate impact, by measuring carbon emissions embedded in our supply chains, assessing the climate risks faced at farm level, and publishing the results. We want to raise awareness about the challenges, the practical solutions, and the need for others to raise their game.
* Finally, we promise to speak out, calling in public and private for governments to set and deliver ambitious targets for emissions reductions and climate finance that puts farmers and workers first.

What the Business Pledge is all about
The businesses who are signing the Business Pledge are committing to keep climate justice at the heart of their work. That means paying fairer prices so farmers can take on the climate crisis they see every day. It means being honest about the climate impact of their own business models, and working hard to reduce those impacts.

It also means investing in the expertise of farmers and workers when doing this work, so the burden and cost of adaption to climate change is not just met by farmers and workers on the front line of the climate crisis.

The companies who have signed the pledge are – (deep breath) – Bartlett Mitchell, Ben and Jerry’s, BIDBI, Bewleys, Cafédirect, Coliman, Cru Kafe, Clipper Tea, Co-Op, Cooperative Coffees, Divine Chocolate, Equal Exchange, Gregg’s, Kaladi Coffee Roasters, La Siembra Cooperative, Liberation Nuts, Lofbergs, Matthew Algie, Marks & Spencer, Navitas Organics, Nespresso, Numi Tea, People Tree, WARP Snacks, Tony’s Chocolonely, Quinola and Waitrose and Partners.

As global leaders meet at the COP26 UN climate summit, Fairtrade farmers and workers are calling for urgent action.

Climate change is already severely damaging the lives and livelihoods of farming communities who grow so much of our food. They are on the front line of a worsening crisis they have done the least to cause. And deeply unfair trade means many simply cannot earn enough to adapt to rapid changes in weather.

That’s why 1.8 million Fairtrade farmers and workers are calling on politicians at the COP26 summit to Be Fair with your Climate Promise.

Farmers and workers are challenging leaders at COP26 to invest in the expertise of their communities, who see the realities of the climate crisis every day.

And they are demanding the wealthiest countries start being honest about their own carbon footprints, and work together to create trade deals and laws that encourage investment in the sustainable solutions many Fairtrade farmers are already pioneering.

Fairtrade farmers and workers know that if we don’t speak out now, it will be too late. Will you join them in challenging our politicians to Be fair with the climate promise?

News

COP26 – Fairtrade farmers’ writing to politicians on climate change

‘Seize this moment, listen to our voices, and ensure that we can continue to feed the world.’

These words end a letter from 1.8 million Fairtrade farmers and workers, addressed to politicians coming to the COP26 UN climate conference in Glasgow next month. Fairtrade farmers and workers know this is our last, best chance for us to turn a corner on climate change together. We need to tell politicians it’s time to respect these farmers and workers as experts on tackling a climate crisis they see every day. Whole communities’ futures, and many of the Fairtrade products we love, are under immediate threat from climate change. But all around the world Fairtrade farmers and workers are pioneering innovative ways to tackle climate change. From tree planting in Ghana to bio-diversity projects in Guatemala, thousands of Fairtrade farmers are doing amazing work right now to build a more sustainable future. With more money in their hands, they could do so much more.

For years, the world’s wealthiest nations – those most responsible for climate change – have promised to create a $100 billion per year climate investment fund. A fund that could be used by communities in low-income countries feeling the worst effects of climate change. But politicians have failed to keep that promise. And of the funding that has been delivered, only 2 per cent reaches those smallholder farmers living with some of the worst effects of the climate crisis. In Fairtrade farmers and workers’ letter to world leaders, the message is clear: this needs to change,
for the future of their communities, for the future of the crops they grow and for all of us.

It’s time for an end to the generations of exploitation of people and planet. We will not survive the climate crisis unless we deliver what we have promised. Politicians must listen to and respect the expertise, needs and ambitions of farmers. It’s time to get behind Fairtrade farmers and workers demanding a fairer future.

News

Organic September – Over 50% of Fairtrade farmers are also organic-certified….

Organic September has just begun and we in Fairtrade are joining with the celebrations.

Because over 50 per cent of Fairtrade farmers are also organic-certified, and the extra earnings Fairtrade can offer makes it easier to invest in eco-friendly organic methods. Our expert Fairtrade Producer Networks also offer support to farmers making the switch.

Why are so many Fairtrade farmers choosing to go organic?

Because by improving soil quality and reducing pollution, organic methods help protect local environments. This so important when many Fairtrade farmers are already feeling the worst effects of climate change.

Also, farmers can frequently earn more for organic produce. It’s win-win!

 

Please keep looking out for Fairtrade and organic treats this organic September. From teas and coffees to pastas and pillow cases, there’s over 1,000 Fairtrade and organic certified products out there. And each one means a better deal for people and the planet.

Featured News

‘You must be the change you wish to see in the world’ Mahatma Gandhi

‘You must be the change you wish to see in the world’ Mahatma Gandhi

Fairtrade supporters in Guernsey will remember the two visits to our island some years ago by Greg Valerio MBE. Greg inspired many of us and opened our eyes to the challenges faced by small scale producers in the artisanal gold mining sector. Yet of even more importance, he showed us from his first hand experience how Fairtrade can be a solution.

In a new initiative, Greg shares the following with us: “Over the years as I have worked as a Fairtrade jeweller and community activist, I have collected the residue of refined gold that has come from the certified Fairtrade Gold mines. This residue, when re-refined, is Fairtrade Silver. What better way to use these kilos of silver, than to create a limited edition ring, profits of which will go directly to the restoration of The Society St Columba’s Celtic Education Centre (Community Education Learning Training and Innovation Centre).

The urgency of tackling the climate chaos that is now enveloping our beautiful world is an urgent CALL TO ACTION. As a jeweller, I witness how large scale mining destroys entire ecosystems and displaces resident communities. I witness small-scale miners using mercury to process gold, oblivious to the toxic impact mercury has to human health and ecosystems. I currently work alongside communities in the Democratic Republic of the Congo who have been devastated by the ongoing mineral funded conflicts of the region. The legacy of ethical jewellery must be greater than just the jewellery itself.

The Society of St Columba at Chanctonbury has a vision for an ecologically biodiverse and sustainable community farm. St Columba’s Farm is all about investing into a model of community-based living here in England. They have taken on a derelict heritage cattle farm and outbuildings and through prayer, work and education have set about restoring the farm, the land and the wildlife to a thriving integrated ecosystem. The Celtic Education Centre is the education hub of this vision.

Education is best served up as an experience, and in a restored centre where school kids, communities groups, and interested parties can come and learn about how we can restore our beautiful local environments and world to their original glory.

Discover more of the work here. An education centre dedicated to truth-telling and practical experiential learning is a legacy worth investing into.

Please visit my website gregvalerio.com/chanctonburyring to buy one of these limited edition rings.”

Valerio Jewellery Home

News Products

5 Fairtrade ingredients that might surprise you……

Which ingredients spring to mind when you think of Fairtrade? Chocolate, coffee, bananas and tea might be the most obvious products, but did you know that Fairtrade works with avocado and coconut farmers too?

Fairtrade certifies over 150 different ingredients and raw materials. Working with over 1.66 million farmers and workers, Fairtrade stands with farmers for fairness and equality, against some of the biggest challenges the world faces.

Here are five ingredients that you might not realise could be sourced as Fairtrade…….

https://www.fairtrade.org.uk/media-centre/blog/5-fairtrade-ingredients-that-might-surprise-you/

News

Climate crisis – power in the hands of farmers facing it.

After the deep disappointment of the G7 summit, and with the critical UN climate summit COP 26 coming to Glasgow in November it’s vital that we face the future focused and determined.

Let’s demand our politicians back their warm words on climate change with real action and financial commitments that mean more power in the hands of farmers facing a climate crisis.

We’re calling for the nations most responsible for the climate crisis to create a $100 billion climate fund. A fund which the communities most affected by climate change can use to adapt to the rapid changes they are already seeing, and to build sustainable futures.

It is absolutely critical that the expertise of farmers and workers is respected. Communities with first-hand experience of the worst realities of climate change – droughts, rampant plant diseases and more frequent natural disasters – must lead decisions on how any money is spent.

Why are we calling for this?

Because the Climate Crisis isn’t fair. The wealthiest 10 per cent of people produce 50 per cent of global carbon emissions. But it’s the lowest-earning farmers and workers whose lives and livelihoods are increasingly threatened by the consequences of climate change.

Centuries of exploitation of people and the planet by the world’s wealthiest have caused this climate emergency, and caused the extreme global inequality which is leaving millions unable to earn enough to adapt to the rapidly changing weather.

So it’s time our politicians owned up to their responsibilities. Let’s remind them we want do our bit to tackle the climate emergency and we want them to listen to the people most affected by climate change.

Events News Products

7 July 2021 – World Chocolate Day…..

What is World Chocolate Day?
World Chocolate Day is sometimes referred to as International Chocolate Day. It takes place on 7 July every year, and put simply, it’s a celebration of all things chocolate! The event was created in 2009. In some countries around the world, the day is celebrated on different dates. But July 7 was chosen for World Chocolate Day because this day is thought to be around the time that chocolate was introduced to European countries. It quickly became a favourite treat in South Africa and across the world!

Why is World Chocolate Day Celebrated?
World Chocolate Day is all about eating chocolate! It’s a celebration of chocolate creations everywhere. No matter what your favourite brand or kind of chocolate is, anyone can celebrate by treating themselves to a little nibble on 7 July. Think of it like a celebration of chocolate becoming well-known and well-loved around the world. Americans celebrate International Chocolate Day on 13 September, because this was the birthday of Milton Hershey, the founder of the Hershey chocolate company.

What is the history of chocolate?
Chocolate originated in Mexico, where Olmec people grew cacao for the first time. The cacao tree species is thought to be around 100 million years old! Word of mouth tales speak of the Olmecs using cacao to make drinks, but there’s no written evidence of this. Their knowledge was passed to the Ancient Maya, who lived in Mexico and Central America. They transformed chocolate into a spiced drink that was used in special ceremonies.

Cacao became a precious commodity, and later the Aztecs used cacao for trade, even using the seeds as a form of money! Cacao was presented to Christopher Columbus in 1502 as he explored the new world. Initially, he thought that the beans were a new type of almond. The true significance of chocolate wasn’t discovered by the wider world until 1519. It was in this year that Spanish Conquistador Hernan Cortez arrived in Central America and saw the Aztec emperor drinking ‘Xocalatl’, which would come to be known as the earliest known hot chocolate.

Ten years later, Cortez set up a cacao plantation for trading and the beans and recipe where transported to Spain, where cinnamon and other spices were added to it along with sugar to make it sweeter. Cacao on its own is very bitter! Chocolate spreads across Europe then, with this first chocolate house opening in London in 1657. Chocolate remains a drink until 1830, when the first moulded chocolate bar was produced.

When you choose Fairtrade chocolate, you know that the farmers and workers who produced the cocoa in it, received an additional Fairtrade Premium on top of the price of their crop which they can invest in their communities and use to fight the effects of climate change.

The price of cocoa beans has slumped in recent years despite high demand, and disease and age are damaging cocoa trees. Young people are increasingly reluctant to choose cocoa farming as a career, because the pay and rewards are so limited for what is a very labour intensive job.

Fairtrade cocoa farmers in places like Côte d’Ivoire and Ghana are guaranteed the Fairtrade minimum price for their crop, plus an additional Fairtrade Premium. It means they are more likely to be able to cover household costs like education, food and healthcare and invest the extra Premium to benefit the wider community, such as buying hospital and school equipment.