It's a great time of year, as fair trade is in the news thanks to Fairtrade Fortnight. Many of our colleagues in other shops or suppliers are doing discounts or offers, but we know what you really want - some delicious Fairtrade chocolate from Zotter! So we're offering you the chance to win some :) Just follow us on Twitter and/or tweet our special message to be in with a chance of winning. We're testing out a cool app called "Rafflecopter" that lets us pick winners at random - if it works out we'll do more offers in the months ahead...
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Here we are half way through Fairtrade Fortnight - hopefully you have seen an increased profile for fair trade produce in your local shops. It would be wrong to see fair trade as a niche which could only exist for a couple of weeks, but events like Fairtrade Fortnight can play a vital role in raising awareness and keeping the issues at the forefront of consumers' minds.
Here in Hay on Wye we are delighted to welcome a fascinating event this evening (Monday 2nd March) featuring a sugar farmer with hands on experience of the difference that fair trade can make. Allan Saidi is visiting from Malawi as part of Fairtrade Fortnight to give his insight as part of his role as secretary of the Fairtrade Premium Committee in his home country. It promises to be an inspiring talk with an opportunity to ask searching questions about the impact of fair trade.
Also speaking will be local journalist and friend of Eighteen Rabbit, Oliver Balch. Ollie has recently returned from a trip to Nicaragua where he visited coffee plantations and saw first hand the work being done to make the coffee industry more equitable for its workers.
There will also be a screening of the film "Fairtrade Matters" about tea farmers in Malawi. You can watch the film online here.
If you're in Hay on Wye the event takes place tonight at Tomatitos Tapas Bar from 7pm, and best of all it is free!
Fairtrade Fortnight is almost upon us. Tomorrow sees the start of two weeks of promotion around the benefits of fair trade. We'll be doing everything we can to help spread the word and get people thinking about how they spend their hard earned cash.
The Fairtrade logo we're all familiar with is applied mostly to commodities - things like coffee, cocoa, sugar and tea, and of course bananas! While we don't sell may of those things, we believe we can still play a big role in promoting fair trade by telling the stories of the talented and creative people who produce the beautiful items we sell.
We have some great new products which have arrived just in time for Fairtrade Fortnight and will be online very soon - including beautiful scarves, a great new range of bags and some fantastic cushions and picture frames.
However you celebrate Fairtrade Fortnight, have fun and go bananas!
We're now halfway through Fairtrade Fortnight, an annual chance to celebrate the opportunities we have to buy fairly. There are great products available from a range of retailers, some of which (like coffee and tea) you'll be very familiar with, and others which are a bit more unusual. For some items it's easy to spot if they are fair trade - you can look for the Fairtrade logo when you're in the supermarket. For others, like a lot of the products we stock, it's more complicated. You may well ask why we don't insist that all of our products carry the Fairtrade logo, and we've tried to answer that here.
For us, the key criteria is transparency. The people you buy from should be open and honest about where their products come from, and should be able to answer questions you have about how the people who created them are remunerated and treated. We have a detailed list of standards
we apply to the products we buy, and also have a questionnaire we send to all prospective suppliers.
We like to think this is going "beyond the logo" and building up a genuine, ongoing relationship with the artisans and craftspeople we are buying from. We have already visited some of our suppliers in person in Mexico and hope to meet more over the year ahead as time allows. Coming soon we have more exclusive lines from Argentina, Colombia and India. If you have any questions about any of the products we stock, please get in touch
and we can tell you all we know.