Bury St Edmunds - Our Fairtrade Town

Celebrate Fairtrade Fortnight from 26th February to 11th March in Bury St Edmunds!

By Richard Stainer of Bury St Edmunds Fairtrade Partnership

Did you know that Bury St Edmunds is a Fairtrade Town? There are a lot of shops and cafes in the town who sell Fairtrade products and many of them display a ‘Proud to Support’ sticker in their window.

The Bury St Edmunds Fairtrade Partnership is a group of enthusiastic Fairtrade supporters whose aim is to increase awareness and understanding within our community. Standing in the cocoa farm just north of Kumasi in Ghana last year we really did feel an awfully long way away from Bury St Edmunds. Yet, Jonathan, the farmer, made it quite clear that we were very closely linked. “When you buy our chocolate,” he said, "we get a fair price for it and a little extra for our community. This has meant that we now have a school in our village of Amankwatia and our children no longer have to walk 6 kilometres to the next village to get an education. When you buy Divine chocolate you are making a real difference to our lives here in Ghana, so I ask you to say to the people in your town, ‘eat more Divine chocolate!’”.

We have heard the same message from so many producers around the world. What we buy in Bury St Edmunds directly affects their families and communities often thousands of miles away. That is why Bury St Edmunds is a Fairtrade town. Many people who live here care about others in the wider world and believe that they should get a fair price for their products.

As a visitor to Bury St Edmunds we want to encourage you to visit our Fairtrade shops, so we have produced a Fairtrade directory which you can pick up at Just Traid in St John’s Street or at the Tourist Information Office at The Apex and other tourist information points in the town. This shows you where all the Fairtrade shops are located in the town.

A visit to Just Traid in St John’s Street is a must. Here you will find a range of craft items, clothing and groceries, all produced to Fairtrade standards. There is also a delightful café serving Fairtrade tea, coffee and chocolate as well as light lunches and some delicious cakes and biscuits, all baked with Fairtrade ingredients.

Our historic town has always been outward looking, welcoming pilgrims to the shrine of St Edmund. Today it welcomes visitors from all over the world, as well as products from many different countries. When you buy those labelled with the Fairtrade mark you are making a real difference to the lives of people like Jonathan. You will also find that those products are delicious or beautifully made.

So, welcome to Bury St Edmunds our outward looking Fairtrade Town!

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