STOCKTON-on-Tees’ tenth year as a Fairtrade Borough was officially marked yesterday (Tuesday 21 November) at a meeting of the full Council.
The Mayor of Stockton-on-Tees, Councillor Maurice Perry, was presented with a Fairtrade certificate of renewal of status on behalf of the Stockton Fairtrade Borough Partnership.
The renewal of the Borough’s Fairtrade status recognises its ongoing commitment to promoting Fairtrade principles.
Maureen Rigg, Chair of the Stockton Fairtrade Borough Partnership, said: “I’m delighted to present the certificate on behalf of the Fairtrade Foundation to the people of this Borough through our Mayor.
“The world is facing many challenges – climate change, globalisation and nationalism being just some – so it’s good that the Council and communities in Stockton-on-Tees are still making the effort to give some of the poorest farmers in the world a fair deal for their produce.
“I’ve met Fairtrade banana growers, coffee growers, cocoa growers, wine producers and they all have one thing in common – a determination to make the best use possible of the Fairtrade price they get for their goods. There are clinics, schools, roads and more which are there because we buy Fairtrade goods.
“Thank you from them and I look forward to the next decade of spreading the support even more widely.”
Councillor Steve Nelson, Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for Access, Communities and Community Safety, said: “As a Borough we are very proud of our Fairtrade status and it was great to mark a decade of our support in this way.
“Fairtrade is a really important campaign having a real impact worldwide, so I would encourage everyone to learn more about it and show their support for people in developing nations to be able to sell their products at a fair price so they can provide for their families and have a better future.”
The Borough was first awarded Fairtrade status in 2007 in recognition of the strong support for Fairtrade and the achievements of five qualifying goals – including, among others, a wide availability of Fairtrade products in local shops and catering outlets. These goals were supplemented by strong support from local residents, businesses, the Council, faith groups and schools.
Fairtrade’s mission is to “connect disadvantaged producers and consumers, promote fairer trading conditions and empower producers to combat poverty, strengthen their position and take more control of their lives”.
For more information about Fairtrade, visit www.fairtrade.org.uk