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How far will you go for Fairtrade Fortnight?

Poverty, Trade, News/feature, Ireland, Global, 2013
Martha Lunji, a sugar beet farmer from Malawi explains why it is so important to support Fairtrade goods at the launch of Fairtrade Fortnight in the Irish Aid Offices Limerick. Picture: Tony Grehan / Press 22

Martha Lunji at the Fairtrade Fortnight launch. Since 2002, Irish Aid has provided over €20m to the IFTN to reduce poverty among smallholder farmers. Photo Tony Grehan/Press 22

It’s Fairtrade Fortnight and the start of a series of events around the country to highlight how Fairtrade products and programmes are transforming the lives of small farmers and their families across the developing world.

 By increasing the market for Fairtrade products, Irish consumers are directly supporting farmers and producers in developing countries to build a better future for their families. Fairtrade ensures that poor farmers can cover their costs, earn a decent living and invest surplus earnings in their farms, which in turn increases their productivity. Fairtrade Mark products are incredibly popular in Ireland with Irish people spending over €174 million in 2012, an increase of nearly 10%.

Ireland has long been a strong supporter of Fairtrade.   Since 2002, Irish Aid has provided over €20m in funding to the Irish Fairtrade Network (IFTN) to support programmes to reduce poverty among smallholder farmers and increase their engagement in the Fairtrade system.  Small-scale farmers, producers and ethical labelling initiatives in Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Tanzania, Kenya, Ethiopia and Uganda, continue to benefit from this support.

Irish people spent over €174 million on Fairtrade products in 2012, an increase of nearly 10%.

 Their work has increased awareness of the importance of fair and ethical trade. It is encouraging to see that importers, wholesalers and retailers are increasingly responding to consumer demand for ethically-certified products.  They are also becoming more aware of the importance of addressing fair trade issues and global challenges such as climate change in order to secure global supply chains. 

Find out more about Fairtrade Fortnight

To find out more about Fairtrade Fortnight and the events being hosted around the country, check out the website at Fair Trade Ireland