The Channel Islands Co-operative Society’s support for Fairtrade

March 7th, 2012 by The Channel Islands Co-operative Society Limited

The Channel Islands Co-operative Society has furthered its commitment to Fairtrade products and has pledged to stock only Fairtrade certified bananas in its Jersey and Guernsey stores from this month.

“The Society is well known for its strong commitment to retailing Fairtrade products,” said Jim Plumley, Chief Commercial Officer for The Channel Islands Co-operative Society. “As the retailer which introduced Fairtrade bananas to consumers in the Channel Islands, we are delighted to commit to ensuring that all of our bananas come from registered Fairtrade organisations from this month onwards.”

The Channel Islands Co-operative Society is the Channel Islands’ leading supermarket supporter of Fairtrade and its Fairtrade range of 200 products covers everything from chocolate to biscuits, hot and cold drinks, fruits and snacks, as well as its market-leading wine range.

This year marks the 10th anniversary since The Channel Island’s Co-operative Society converted its entire own-brand block chocolate range to Fairtrade.

“Fairtrade is about better prices, decent working conditions, local sustainability, and fair terms of trade for farmers and workers in the developing world. By requiring companies to pay sustainable prices (which must never fall lower than the market price), Fairtrade addresses the injustices of conventional trade, which traditionally discriminates against the poorest, weakest producers. It enables them to improve their position and have more control over their lives.” Mr Plumley explained.

“Fairtrade sales are strong and our customers are increasingly choosing to purchase Fairtrade items,” added Mr Plumley. “To encourage more shoppers to switch to Fairtrade products, we will be offering 20% discount off selected Fairtrade products, including selected Fairtrade wine, between 27th February and 20th March inclusive.”

As part of its Fairtrade Fortnight celebrations and the continuing promotion of the International Year of Co-operatives, the Society is bringing a special guest to the islands – Kenyan tea producer, Joseph Cheruiyot.

The Society will be hosting a Fairtrade tea party event, at which Mr Cheruiyot will be guest speaker, at Grand Jersey Hotel on Friday 9 March 2012.

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Mr Joseph Cheruiyot is a producer from the Kibagenge Tea Co-operative in Kenya, which has been providing tea to The Co-operative Society for seven years. Kibagenge, which translates in the farmers’ local language as “coming together as one”, brings together more than 11,000 individual growers into five co-operatives.

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Mr Cheruiyot, who speaks four languages, is attending events around the UK. He will be giving speeches and also visiting schools to talk about the Fairtrade concept.

He hopes to give a real insight into life and the experiences of a Fairtrade producer as well as the benefits that come with combining Fairtrade with the co-operative business model.

There are a limited number of places available to members of the public who wish to attend the tea party. Fifteen invites will be allocated on a first come first served basis.

Anyone who would like to come along should call 01534 485522 or email gyeoman @ ci-coop.com to express their interest.

(click logo to go to The Channel Islands Co-operative Society Ltd website)

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