Birmingham currently holds the title of being a ‘Fairtrade Town’ (well, city) and has done since November 2005.
According to the Fairtrade Towns scheme,
“A Fairtrade Town is any community that:
• supports Fairtrade and deepens understanding of the benefits Fairtrade brings
• takes action by choosing Fairtrade products whenever possible and encourages others to do likewise
• achieves and continues to take action on the five Fairtrade Town goals set by the Fairtrade Foundation.”
There are 5 criterion to fulfill in order to become a Fairtrade Town. These are:
1. Local council passes a resolution supporting Fairtrade, and agrees to serve Fairtrade products (for example, in meetings, offices and canteens).
2. A range of (at least two) Fairtrade products are readily available in the area’s retail outlets (shops, supermarkets, newsagents, petrol stations) and served in local catering outlets (cafés, restaurants, pubs).
3. Local workplaces and community organisations (places of worship, schools,universities, colleges and other communityorganisations) support Fairtrade and use Fairtrade products whenever possible. Populations over 100,000 will also need a flagship employer.
4. Media coverage and events raise awareness and understanding of Fairtrade across the community.
5. A local Fairtrade steering group is convened to ensure the Fairtrade Town campaign continues to develop and gain new support.
Birmingham’s Fairtrade campaign group is the Fairtrade Association Birmingham (FAB), which is supported by the city council.
I have contacted a few of the relevant authorities as I aim to find out how much Birmingham is doing to hold onto its green credentials.
For more info on ‘Fairtrade Towns’ see the guide published by the movement.
Can Birmingham stay 'green'?