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Last Updated: Saturday, 13 March, 2004, 19:45 GMT
Fair trade sales 'may hit 150m'
Tulip, Eyewire
Flowers are among more than 250 fair trade products now available
Sales of fair trade products could reach 150m in the coming year based on current sales growth, promoters claim.

Organisers of the 10th Fairtrade Fortnight, which ends on Sunday, estimate goods worth at least 3.8m have been sold during the event.

A Fairtrade Foundation spokeswoman said they hoped to see a 50% rise in the coming year on last year's 100m fair food sales in the UK.

The organisation promotes better trade terms for developing world producers.

Our ultimate goal is always that more and more benefit can go back to the producers - the farmers and their families
Eileen Maybin, Fairtrade
Ten years on from the launch of the Fairtrade labelling system, shoppers can choose from more than 250 products.

They include fruit, honey, nuts, wine and roses, as well as coffee, tea, chocolate and even clothes.

A spokeswoman for the annual Fairtrade Fortnight said: "Sales grew 46% last year on the year before so we are hoping sales will go up again 50% in the coming year."

The Fairtrade mark's 10th anniversary was celebrated in about 6,000 events across the UK, including tastings and an exhibition of photographs.

'Flying off shelves'

Spokeswoman Eileen Maybin said the organisation had been delighted by an "explosion of interest" in fair trade over the past two weeks.

"Our ultimate goal is always that more and more benefit can go back to the producers - the farmers and their families," she said.

"Products have been flying off the shelves during Fairtrade Fortnight."

FAIR TRADE FIGURES
UK shoppers spend 3.17 on fair trade goods each second
More than 100 companies offer 250-plus fair trade products
The label has 18% of the UK's roast and ground coffee market
Currently 4% of all bananas bought in the UK are fair trade
Edinburgh, Swansea and the London School of Economics declared themselves fair trade universities, while 16 towns and cities were awarded fair trade status.

To achieve this, local councils had to meet five criteria including supporting fair trade, using products in their offices and ensuring local shops stocked fair trade goods.

Harriet Lamb, Fairtrade's executive director, said: "The rapidly rising sales prove that consumers do care and are prepared to pay the true price for products they know they can trust."

The Salvation Army, British Medical Association and Youth Hostel Associations have all announced a switch to fair trade tea and coffee.

Justino Peck, a cocoa farmer from Belize who visited the UK during the Fairtrade Fortnight, said: "Fairtrade gives us the guarantee that we will be able to support our families."




SEE ALSO:
How fair trade hit the mainstream
02 Mar 04  |  Business
Fairtrade mark for UK organic food
03 Jan 03  |  UK News


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