Pulborough marks Fairtrade Fortnight

Arundel & South Downs MP Nick Herbert was at Pulborough Village Hall on Saturday morning (27 February) to enjoy a breakfast of Fairtrade and locally produced food.

The ‘Big Breakfast’ event was organised by the Pulborough Fairtrade Group to coincide with Fairtrade Fortnight which runs nationally from 22 February to 7 March.

Mr Herbert was joined by around 150 people who were able to choose from the ‘full English’ option of sausages, bacon, eggs and mushrooms or a lighter option consisting of fruit juice, muesli, toast and preserves.

Many of the products served up for breakfast, sourced either from local farms or Fairtrade producers overseas, were also available to buy at the Village Market which was held in an adjacent hall.

Fairtrade labels appear on products, such as tea, coffee, sugar and bananas, as an independent guarantee that disadvantaged producers in the developing world are getting a better deal.

Producers receive a minimum price that covers the cost of sustainable production and an extra premium that is invested in social, economic or environmental development projects. The minimum price also acts as a safety net for farmers at times when world markets fall below a sustainable level.

In 2007, Pulborough was the first village in West Sussex to be granted Fairtrade status for its work in promoting these products. The village recently applied for an extension to its Fairtrade status and was granted two years instead of one in recognition of its success.

Chairman of Pulborough Fairtrade Group Gerald Batt commented: “It was wonderful to see so many people joining us for the Big Breakfast on Saturday including our local MP Nick Herbert. All the food served was either Fairtrade or local produce and it was all bought locally.

“The theme of this year's Fairtrade Fortnight is “Swap it” and we are asking local people to consider swapping their usual brands of tea, coffee, sugar etc for a Fairtrade brand. We also want to encourage people to shop locally.”

Nick Herbert commented: “I was delighted to support this year’s event and enjoyed a superb breakfast! As well as backing local farmers and producers, Fairtrade also enables us to support growers in developing countries.”

Mr Herbert added: “Pulborough has the proud distinction of being the first Fairtrade village in West Sussex, and I congratulate the organisers of the Big Breakfast for another successful event to help promote Fairtrade Fortnight.”



Notes for Editors

1. The event was held at Pulborough Village Hall, Swan View, Lower Street, Pulborough, West Sussex RH20 2BF from 9am to 11am on Saturday 27 February.

2. For further information on the Fairtrade system, visit http://www.fairtrade.org.uk/.

3. More than 4,500 products are now licensed to carry the Fairtrade Mark. Despite the severe recession, in 2009 sales of Fairtrade products in the UK were up by 12 per cent on the previous year to an estimated retail value of over £799 million.

4. In the photograph, Nick Herbert is being presented with his ‘big breakfast' by Maudie Leese of Pulborough.

Christopher N Howarth