Mark Hunter MP supports Fairtrade Fortnight and Banana Producers

March 4, 2014 11:08 AM

Local MP, Mark Hunter, joined Fairtrade businesses and Foncho a Colombian Banana producer at the Houses of Parliament.

A Fairtrade business, fairandfunky, ran the event in Parliament to bring Fairtrade to the centre of Parliament and Mark was delighted to attend, to show support for the campaign to Make Bananas Fair and meet Foncho, a banana farmer from Cienaga in Colombia.

The UK eats over five billion bananas a year; 80% of which are bought from major supermarkets that are continually battling with each other in a very competitive price war. In the past 10 years, the UK supermarket sector has almost halved the shelf price of loose bananas while the cost of producing them has doubled. The resulting drop in export prices for bananas in producing countries means an ever-tightening squeeze on what producers earn for their bananas. This, combined with escalating production and living costs, means many farmers and workers' standards of living have progressively worsened in the past decade.

Albeiro Ruiz Banana Fairtrade

Mark meets with banana grower Albeiro Ruiz

Columbian banana farmer Albeiro Alfonso 'Foncho' Cantillo Ruiz is in the UK throughout Fairtrade Fortnight to make bananas big news, and joined fairandfunky to convince the government to take action to help end unfair pricing by supermarkets. Together we need stick with Foncho to Make Bananas Fair.

Commenting, Mark said:

"Hearing about the impact of Fairtrade and the need to make bananas fair, first hand from Foncho was very powerful. I have been a long-term supporter of Fairtrade, and Stockport Council was one of the first local authorities in the country to become Fairtrade accredited; as such I was of course happy to sign the pledge and support the campaign."

Kate Jones, the Fairtrade Foundation's Education Campaigns Manager, said:

"Fairtrade is at the core of our business, and we were thrilled with the support from MPs for the event and for the campaign. It was an excellent opportunity to put Fairtrade on the agenda for MPs."

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