20 years of Fairtrade aid

Photograph Jamie Forbes 5.3.14 Milton of Campsie Parish Church.
Photograph Jamie Forbes 5.3.14 Milton of Campsie Parish Church.

Work to support Third World farmers is continuing to grow in East Dunbartonshire as the area marks the 20th anniversary of the Fairtrade Mark.

The area was awarded 
Fairtrade Zone status for the third time last year thanks to the support of organisations – including East Dunbartonshire Council and a fourth renewal bid is being prepared.

Local charities, groups and champions are also encouraging people to “think global and act local”.

The Balmore Trust, which was established in 1980, sells a range of fairly-traded goods from The Coach House in 
Balmore.

It has supported developing world producers and given away more than £1million since its inception.

Milton of Campsie Parish Church was also an early supporter of fair trade.

Lenzie Community Council has helped to pioneer the Fairtrade movement in East Dunbartonshire since autumn 2011.

It helped to set up Lenzie Fairtrade Group, featuring community councillors and like-minded local residents recently renewing Lenzie’s Fairtrade status until 2016.

Meanwhile, volunteers in Bearsden and Milngavie have been successful in their bid to become Fairtrade Towns after an application to the Fairtrade Foundation was approved.

Councillor Rhondda Geekie, leader of East Dunbartonshire Council, said:”The ethos ‘Think global, act local’ is key to sustainability and our fairtrade work is a great example of this - a local response to a national effort to tackle an international issue.

“As well as goods carrying the Fairtrade Mark, other fair trade goods are also available and are important to the wider movement.

“There are lots of ways we can support fair trade, no matter who or where we are.

“One key action we can take is to buy more fairly-traded products – many are available in supermarkets and also from specialist local outlets, such as Balmore Coach House and Just Trading Scotland.

“Congratulations to all the campaigners have worked so hard in the past and are continuing to do so today to help make East Dunbartonshire such a Fairtrade friendly area.Excellent progress has been made and there are many other actions we can take.”