When you visit Bury St Edmunds you are visiting a Fairtrade Town which means that many of the shops sell Fairtrade goods.
For example, you can enjoy Fairtrade tea and coffee in Greggs, Cafe W, No4 Restaurant and Bar, Marks and Spencer cafe, Pilgrim's Kitchen and then wander down beautiful Abbeygate Street to Neal’s Yard Remedies and discover their range of Fairtrade skin products.
St Edmundsbury Cathedral Shop
On Angel Hill there is the St Edmundsbury Cathedral Shop with a number of Fairtrade gift ideas, during the summer why not take a walk around the Abbey Gardens and enjoy fairtrade coffee at the The Garden Cafe.
A walk down St John’s Street is a delight as there are a host of interesting, independent shops including Sunrise which sells Fairtrade items and Just Traid, Bury St Edmunds' own Fairtrade shop. Open from 10am to 4pm Tuesday to Saturday, Just Traid has a wide range of interesting fairly traded gift items and a great deal of Fairtrade food items. There is also an excellent vegetarian café (Old School Cafe) with Fairtrade tea and coffee and some delicious homemade cakes.
One of the shop’s most popular lines is Divine chocolate made from cocoa from Ghana. There is now a number of delicious flavours apart from the high cocoa plain and milk bars. Some of the most popular are orange and ginger, toffee and sea salt, and almond and raisin. All the cocoa for these bars comes from a cocoa co-operative in Ghana called Kuapa Kokoo. Two of the Bury St Edmunds Fairtrade Partnership team have been out to visit, and we can guarantee that this is not only very good quality chocolate, but its sale makes a real difference to people’s lives. The extra Fairtrade premium is used to provide schools and clinics in remote villages that have few facilities. What is more, cocoa farmers are given extra training to maximise their yields and to develop other sources of income.
At all the Visitor Information Points across the town you can pick up a Fairtrade Directory which will show you where all 28 of the local shops and cafes which support Fairtrade are to be found.
The year’s Fairtrade Fortnight is from 25 February to 10 March and will focus on cocoa. Cocoa farmers have seen prices crash to crisis levels in the last few years, particularly in West Africa where most cocoa is grown. The situation highlights in stark terms the scandal of unfair trade. Many farmers – both men and women – are underpaid and exploited.
The countries in West Africa which produce most of our cocoa may seem a long way from Bury St Edmunds, but we are linked closely with them every time we buy chocolate or cocoa. What we pay for that product makes a real difference to the people in Ghana and Sao Tome.
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