Newcastle North MP Catherine McKinnell has reaffirmed her commitment to Fairtrade Fortnight during an event in Westminster. Catherine is a proud and passionate supporter of the fairtrade movement, as campaigning on this issue is how she first became involved in politics as a student.
This year, Fairtrade Fortnight raises awareness of the need to protect the farmers behind some of Britain’s best loved foods from the harmful effects of climate change. Fairtrade Fortnight runs from February 21 – March 6 and the Fairtrade Foundation is running a campaign highlighting the growing challenges that climate change brings to farmers and agricultural workers overseas who grow popular products such as tea, coffee, cocoa, and bananas.
New data from the Fairtrade Foundation has found that over 60% of the British public are unaware of the threats that climate change poses to UK supplies of cocoa, coffee, and bananas. It also found that another 78% believe it is important that people overseas who produce tea, coffee, food, flowers, cotton, and other staple products imported by the UK are able to adapt to climate change.
Catherine said “since my student days, I have been a proud supporter and campaigner for the fairtrade movement. I was delighted to again join the Fairtrade Foundation at their event in Parliament to mark Fairtrade Fortnight this year.
“The climate crisis is the biggest threat to the livelihoods of millions of small-scale farmers and agricultural workers in low-income countries worldwide. Farmers and workers in countries such as Kenya, Ethiopia, and Honduras, who have done the least to contribute to climate change, are disproportionately affected by it.
“Fairtrade plays a valuable role in supporting farmers to respond to the environmental crises unfolding in their communities. However, it’s important that we all play our part in tackling climate change. Choosing Fairtrade goods is a simple yet effective step that we can all take to enable farmers to have better incomes vital for protecting their bananas, coffee, cocoa, and other crops from climate threats like drought, floods, and rising temperatures.”
* Research was conducted by Opinium Research on behalf of Fairtrade. It polled 2,000 UK adults in the week commencing 24 January 2022 and results were weighted to be nationally representative.