St James's Church, Hampton Hill

Fighting Poverty through Trade - 2011

Mabale Growers Tea Factory

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Support Fairtrade by buying ethically and together we really can change the world...

The Minister’s message

Alan Duncan MP, International Development Minister, speaking at King’s College, London, on 9 October 2010, said: "Those who sneer at Fairtrade and think it’s some sort of soppy, trendy lefty notion are completely wrong. It is a robust economic model which delivers direct benefits to some of the world’s poorest people. It injects fairness and sensible economics into business communities in poor countries, rewarding hard work with a fair price for their produce." He added: "Let’s not forget that Fairtrade’s success is really down to the hundreds of campaigners who have worked tirelessly to get Fairtrade products in their local shops, cafes, restaurants, workplaces, churches and schools."

LOCATION REPORT: Mabale Growers Tea Factory

This is located on the lower slopes of the Rwenzori Mountains near Fort Portal in the west of Uganda, the country’s main tea growing area. It incorporates a tea processing factory and two tea estates that were previously owned and operated by the state, but were abandoned during the chaos of the Idi Amin regime and its aftermath in the late 1970s. They have since been renovated, rehabilitated and privatised under the government’s smallholder tea programme, giving subsistence farmers the opportunity to grow and sell tea as a cash crop. The ownership of Mabale was passed to an association of 1,000 shareholders, 80% of whom are small-scale farmers with less than two hectares. They depend on tea for 50-60% of their cash income.

Irene Kijara, 31, has three children, and is a teacher and successful local businesswoman. She is a larger-scale farmer than the average Mabale shareholder, running the family’s two tea farms which are six and seven hectares in size. They provide employment for 15 workers. She said: "Fairtrade is a very good benefit to us. It has helped us by building roads, schools, leaf collection sheds, and a clinic at the factory. And field officers funded by Fairtrade have helped us improve the quality of our tea."
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The Fairtrade stall

Our Traidcraft Stall

Many thanks to all who support our stall, on the first Sunday of every month. We are pleased that many of you come to buy, but we’re also happy if you just want to look. This Fairtrade Fortnight the focus product is cotton, so please make time to look at the display in church. One of the joys of running the stall is reading about the people who produce the products we sell, which heightens our awareness of our dependence on others. You may pay a little more, but the quality is good and with enough people buying something we really can make a difference.

How you can help further
• Buy some items from us regularly — and buy Fairtrade wherever you shop
• Give us an order any time
• Buy a box (usually six packets) of the longer shelf-life products, such as coffee or pasta.
• Borrow the new Spring catalogue from the back of church
• Remember to look in the catalogue for gifts throughout the year
• Make sure your Easter Eggs and chocolate gifts are Fairtrade

The Church’s message

The concept of fair trade is not specifically Christian. Religious and secular groups joined together to form the Fairtrade Foundation in 1992 – Traidcraft, Oxfam, CAFOD, Christian Aid and the World Development Movement. These founding organisations were later joined by the Women’s Institute. There is, though, a particular Christian rationale for all whose roots are in the faith and practice of the Christian Church. Its starting point is that God is the world’s Creator. As creation, the world must be cared for. Human beings, as part of creation, are made in the image of God. This gives to each individual a basic dignity and intrinsic potential. This potential should flourish, both for individuals and communities. Unjust structures and practices in society undermine people’s God-given lives. Through a life poured out in service, Jesus demonstrated the value of human beings in God’s sight. Jesus did not just talk - he acted. Christians involved in fair trade work through acts of practical service rather than explicit evangelism, but nonetheless this is ‘mission’, following in the footsteps of Jesus. Revd. Peter Vannozzi

Cotton production in the Kita region of Mali

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LOCATION REPORT: Cotton production in the Kita region of Mali, pictured on the right, began in 1995. The country is now the largest cotton producer in Africa, employing several hundred thousand people on 200,000 farms. The producers’ co-operative gained Fairtrade status in 2004 and has used the premium to build a school and health centre; drill wells; for education and training; and to diversify into other crops such as maize.

You may already be involved in the fair trade movement; but have you ever wondered how farmers in the developing world finance their route to fair and just trade? Shared Interest pools money, invested by their members, to lend to fair trade businesses in the developing world. Last year it lent over £33 million in 36 countries. Based in Newcastle upon Tyne, it has offices in Costa Rica, Kenya and Peru, and continues to be the world's only 100% fair trade lender. To find out how you can invest as little as £100 to help realise such huge global impact, go to or telephone Sally Reith 077 9582 5442 email

What’s the difference between Fairtrade and fair trade?

Fairtrade is an accreditation labelling system which certifies that products bearing the Fairtrade mark meet criteria. International standards have been developed on a product-by-product basis, and cover a wide range of food items and cotton. Others will follow. Fair trade expresses a rather wider vision of development, seeking to transform the lives of poor producers and covering a much wider range of products than can be certified, such as craft items. It also embraces campaigning.

What does the Fairtrade Mark guarantee?
• An agreed stable and sustainable price for farmers
• An extra payment (a ‘premium’) to invest in their community.

Traidcraft v the supermarket
Fairtrade products are readily available in supermarkets. Any product with the Fairtrade mark delivers a better deal to the farmer, but pioneering fair trade companies, such as Traidcraft, go further by reinvesting trading profit in their producers’ businesses. Traidcraft also brings new products to market, which later gain the Fairtrade mark – as it did with wine and is now doing with rubber gloves. Other pioneering fair trade companies include:
• Cafédirect which in five years has invested over half its profits into farmers’ businesses.
• Divine Chocolate is 45% owned by the Kuapa Kokoo co-operative in Ghana. The cocoa farmers have a direct say over how the company is run and share in the profits.
• Liberation (Nuts) is 42% owned by a co-operative of 11 farmers’ groups from eight countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America. Farmers have seats on the company board and share any profits it makes

Source: Ann Peterken and Catherine Gash, The Spire Magazine - 2011 March

St James's Church
The Parish Church of St James, Hampton Hill, TW12 1DQ
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