Labour MEPs are ‘Sticking with Foncho’ this Fair Trade Fortnight

GW and fair tradeEast Midlands Labour MEP, Glenis Willmott, joined with Labour colleagues in the European Parliament this week to celebrate Fair Trade Fortnight by tucking into some fair trade banana bread.

This year’s campaign is asking people to ‘Stick with Foncho’, a banana farmer from Colombia who is travelling to the UK to ask business secretary Vince Cable to investigate unfair supermarket pricing practices and act to protect the producers of the UK’s favourite fruit.

In the last 10 years, the shelf price of loose bananas in UK supermarkets has almost halved even though the cost of producing bananas has doubled.

Glenis Willmott MEP said:

“Apples which are grown in the UK are sold at nearly twice the price of bananas which are grown in tropical climates. We have to stop this economic imbalance and ensure banana farmers are getting a fair price for their produce.

“Cheap bananas trap farmers and workers in poverty, and we now pay on average only 11p for a loose banana compared to 20p for a loose UK grown apple.”

Bananas are the most popular and traded fruit in the world – annually, one hundred million tonnes are produced worldwide. In the UK, £550 million is spent on bananas each year, with 1.2 billion bananas fair trade, a third of all bananas sold in Britain.

Glenis said:

“It is high time British supermarkets take a responsible and sustainable approach to purchasing bananas. You can help by signing Foncho’s petition and buying fair trade produce, helping lift banana farmers like Foncho out of poverty.”

ENDS

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