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Fairtrade Fortnight

NORTHERN isles MP Alistair Carmichael is encouraging local people to support Fairtrade Fortnight 2012, which runs from Monday until 11 March.

The theme of this year’s event is ‘Take a Step’, with people being encouraged to make a small gesture to increase the profile of fair trade goods and raise awareness of the positive impact that the fair trade movement has had within the developing world.

“When the Fairtrade movement was founded, the only product available was a single chocolate bar. Since then, the range and availability of Fairtrade goods has grown to the extent that global Fairtrade sales reached £712 million in 2008. The Fairtrade Foundation currently has over 3,000 Fairtrade certified products for sale throughout the UK,” Mr Carmichael said.

“People in the northern isles were in the frontline of the fair-trade movement as it developed in the UK. Westray and Fair Isle were amongst the first communities in the country to achieve Fairtrade status. I am confident, therefore, that there will be strong support for this year’s Fairtrade Fortnight across Orkney and Shetland.

“Local people know that the way we choose to shop has a profound impact on the lives of people in the developing world. By choosing Fairtrade we can help families and communities work their way out of poverty. I would encourage everyone in Orkney and Shetland to consider participating in Fairtrade Fortnight this year.”