Monmouthshire County Council has celebrated ten years of action to promote Fairtrade with an event featuring pupils at Goytre Fawr Primary School.  The council has recently received approval from the national Fairtrade Foundation for its application to renew its Fairtrade County status.

The award is given in recognition of strong support for Fairtrade within the county, and the achievement of five qualifying goals, including a wide availability of Fairtrade products in local shops and catering outlets and high levels of support from local people, businesses, the council, faith groups and schools.

Much effort is devoted to making Monmouthshire a Fairtrade County, and the status has to be renewed every two years.  The council must demonstrate that it uses and makes Fairtrade products available, as well as helping Monmouthshire’s four very active local groups publicise Fairtrade.

Monmouthshire’s cabinet member for social justice and community development, Councillor Sara Jones joined a special Fairtrade assembly at Goytre Fawr Primary School with the council’s Sustainability Policy Officer, Hazel Clatworthy.  The school’s pupils already know about the difference Fairtrade makes to farmers because Goytre Fawr is a Fair Achiever School, an award granted by the Fairtrade Foundation.

Councillor Jones said: “I’m delighted that we are celebrating a decade of work promoting Fairtrade to people in Monmouthshire benefiting so many farmers and growers in developing countries.  It is fantastic that schools in Monmouthshire are teaching our young people that the decisions we take when shopping can have a direct impact on quality of life for people on the other side of the world.  We are also hugely grateful for the hard work of volunteers in the Abergavenny, Chepstow, Monmouth and Usk Fairtrade Town groups who have contributed to our Fairtrade County status.”

Adam Gardner, Communities Campaigns Manager at the Fairtrade Foundation added: “We’re very pleased that Monmouthshire has renewed its Fairtrade status and laid out clear exciting goals to take Fairtrade further.

“Thanks to the ongoing support of the public and campaigners, an increasing number of farmers in developing countries are now selling their products on Fairtrade terms, bringing them a stable income, and the chance to trade their way out of poverty.”

Contact: hazelclatworthy@monmouthshire.gov.uk for further information on Fairtrade in Monmouthshire.