With this year's official Fairtrade Fortnight running from 25th February-10th March, we take a look at how retailers are supporting the event, and driving an ethical agenda in the face of a highly value orientated market.
This year’s Fairtrade Fortnight focuses on campaigning for a living income to become a reality for cocoa farmers in West Africa, with a particular focus on women. The foundation is running a “She Deserves a Living Income campaign”, to encourage shoppers to buy Fairtrade products.
Co-op: ethical commitment
The Co-op has a strong focus on ethical trading and is the UK’s largest convenience retailer of Fairtrade products, so it is no surprise that it is running a number of initiatives and leading on support for Fairtrade Fortnight this year. The retailer has been committed to supporting Fairtrade since its launch in the UK in 1994 and today, all of its own brand chocolate is sourced from Fairtrade cocoa.
This year, Co-op has launched a Fairtrade Pledge, in which it is encouraging customers to swap one product in their basket for a Fairtrade alternative. Co-op is also urging customers to celebrate the impact Fairtrade has made around the world and has launched a celebration pack. With this, customers can access stories, recipes using Fairtrade products, and hints and tips on how to promote Fairtrade within communities. The retailer has also been promoting the campaign on its social media platforms, particularly using videos to show the impact of buying Fairtrade.
M&S: traceability tool
Following the launch of its traceability map in 2016, M&S has extended the coverage of the map to its tea and coffee supply chains in support of Fairtrade Fortnight this year. Part of M&S’s long-term goal to be a leader for sustainable production, all coffee and tea sold at M&S is Fairtrade. Last year, the retailer contributed over £1.3m in Fairtrade Premiums for the tea and coffee producers to invest in their communities.
The interactive traceability tool shows where the retailer’s tea and coffee producers are located, as well as key details on these producers. The map also shows the number of workers or cooperative members and, where possible, the percentage of females who are cooperative members. This reflects M&S’s plan to champion female workers and growers in its supply chain.
Hidden hot chocolate salon pop-up
To mark the start of Fairtrade Fortnight, the Fairtrade Foundation opened a secret hot chocolate salon in London. The innovative pop-up was hidden at the back of a newsagents in Dalston, and customers were transported into a West African themed café at the push of a button. The café, named Rosine’s Hot Chocolate Salon after a cocoa farmer from Co^te d’Ivoire, offered a choice of three hot chocolates. The hot chocolates were priced at £1.86, representing a day’s living income for a cocoa farmer.
Waitrose and Co-op were among the commercial partners that donated products for the hot chocolate salon, along with a number of suppliers including Divine Fairtrade chocolate and Freedom Mallows.
Appeal of Fairtrade products
IGD’s ShopperVista research shows that 15% of shoppers said that whether a product supports workers in developing nations was very important and 42% said this was fairly important. This indicates shoppers are willing to pay to support values such as Fairtrade. Our Shoppers of the Future research also indicates that shoppers will be finding more ways to express their social consciousness through their shopping in the future. With ethical considerations expected to become more relevant to shoppers in the future, retailers’ support of such events and visibility of relevant ranges seems set to be an increasingly important driver of store choice in the future.
IGD Co-op Trade Briefing 2019
19 September, Manchester
Succeeding together. The supplier engagement day will help delegates learn practical ways to action Co-op’s strategy and will also give you the chance to help strengthen relationships and businesses together.
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