26 Feb Opening the door to Fairtrade – Fairtrade Fortnight 2018
Fairtrade Fortnight 2018 runs from 26 February to 11 March and once again #EthicalHour are pleased to support efforts to raise awareness of Fairtrade and close the door to exploitation in global supply chains.
Around the world, millions of farmers and workers are being exploited despite working hard to provide the products we love.
Fairtrade empowers people to earn their way out of poverty and transform their communities from within. When you choose Fairtrade you choose to stand with these producers and help them change their situation. The more people that choose, share and shout about Fairtrade, the more power to producers to break the stranglehold of poverty prices.
For Fairtrade Month last year we united the #EthicalHour tribe to raise awareness and globally we reached over 2 million people. This Fairtrade Fortnight we want to encourage even more people to make the switch to Fairtrade and close the door on exploitation.
As some big companies turn their back on the Fairtrade standards we think it’s more important than ever to stand with producers around the world and support Fairtrade.
When you think of Fairtrade it’s easy to think of food but the certifications and standards apply to so much more. I love meeting inspirational new brands and business owners who are approaching sustainability, social impact and principles like Fair Trade in innovative and exciting ways. It’s been a real pleasure getting to know this year’s sponsors.
Meet the brands helping us make the world a fairer place…
Founded with a passion for Fairtrade business, Boho Homes sell unique, chic bohemian products which are ethically sourced and are testament to the craftsmanship of generations of artisans. They work with Fairtrade & BAFTS certified suppliers as well as grassroots artisans.
Boho Homes are committed to supporting artisans and promoting development opportunities for the people they work with. They provide a global trading platform and fair price for handmade products. Boho Homes also endeavors to enhance the skills and trading power of their artisan community so that they can be economically self-sufficient and contribute to the development of their local community.
Their ever-changing portfolio of quality products includes things like organic cotton tote bags & table linen made by disabled people, hand painted wooden home accessories made by traditional artisans and everything in between. Each product tells a story, woven by the lives and hands of the artisans who made it.
They take pride in the wide range of their portfolio and ability to source almost everything that resonates with their theme, and they work directly with the artisans.
Boho homes aims to help their partners develop their business and contribute to empowerment of the community they live in. They aim to provide a dependable and trustworthy platform to marginal, disabled artisans and help them gain fair price for their products. They only ever want to leave green footprints and a sustainable legacy behind, so they minimise waste and promote use of recycled paper, sustainable wood and locally, ethically sourced raw material for the products they stock.
Find out more about Boho Homes and shop the collection:
From Belo founders Char (UK), Cami and Maria (Brazil), decided to turn their long-distance friendship and constant wanderlust into something beautiful and unique – an ethical luxury brand that gives back.
During their travels, they realised that they felt restricted by their accessories. On the search for a bag that would be both practical, beautiful and consciously made, they realised the only option would be to produce something themselves. Char went to bag design school, Maria and Cami searched for a manufacturer and they began to develop the BELO Bag. A beautiful, easily convertible backpack/handbag that radiates personality.
During their pursuit for a manufacturer, Cami and Maria discovered an abundance of wasted talent within their own city. Large manufacturers had left the region and even the country for cheaper labour in China and Paraguay. This had led to many losing their jobs and livelihoods. As a team, they decided to keep everything local to help support and give back to Cami and Maria’s local community.
From Belo believe in aiming to leave the earth a better place than when they arrived. Using these beliefs as core foundations, they created the BELO bag using sustainable materials, recycled fabrics/plastic bottles and deadstock leather.
Each product sold helps strengthen these communities further. As a social enterprise, with every product purchased, From Belo will donate plates of food to Casa De Maria, an NGO that provides food and support to the homeless and those in need in Belo Horizonte, Brazil.
As a new start-up, From Belo don’t have official Fairtrade Certification, but they have built the concepts of Fairtrade into their business model, ensuring that their producers and manufacturers are paid a fair wage and that money is reinvested in the communities where their products are made.
Find out more about From Belo and shop the collection:
Grönn Eco Salon
Firmly placed in the heart of the community in Bury, UK, Grönn is a hair salon with an eco friendly edge. Owner Rachael lovingly designed and built the interior space by hand, with help from friends and family, using reclaimed natural and sustainable local materials, absolutely no plastic. Pallet wood was donated by local businesses, so Rachael knows exactly where every piece of wood came from and many elements like their sustainable willow signage is made by local businesses and artists.
She has created a stunning, one of a kind environment that feels calm, serene and a million miles away from the salon experience of being just another ‘bum on a seat’.
Everything in the salon from the solar powered fairy lights to the disposable towels (which go in the compost) has been carefully selected with sustainability in mind. They even feed the coffee grounds to the plants so nothing is wasted!
As well as creating beautiful hair, Rachael has reached out to bring the community together under one roof in as many unique and fun ways possible. Everyone is welcome at Grönn and they pride themselves on listening and being open to new ideas and adventures.
Rachael has chosen to stock and use brands and products which are as chemical free as possible, which marry with her core values of being; ethical, sustainable, carbon neutral, of natural origin, paraben & sulphate free. They also offer a refill/return service.
Everything in the salon is vegan (including Rachael!) and cruelty free, and their extensive refreshments list is a mix of organic and Fairtrade.
Bury is a Fairtrade Borough and Rachael is a member of the Fairtrade steering group who campaign and encourage residents, visitors, businesses and community organisations to support Fairtrade.
Find out more about Grönn Eco Salon:
Julia Thompson Jewellery
Based in rural Somerset, Julia Thompson embraces living on the wild side allowing her idyllic surroundings to inspire much of her ethical jewellery design which is unusual, bold, and full of narrative. Channeling her childhood love of fabled rhymes into her work, Julia’s signature collection ‘Two for Joy’ illustrates the familiar tale of superstition evoked by the magpie.
Julia uses traditional hand fabrication techniques working in recycled sterling silver and Fairtrade Gold. She incorporates quartz with beautiful natural inclusions and colourful fairly sourced Sri Lankan sapphires into her designs. Some of these are completely unique, one of a kind, making each piece bespoke and individual for those free spirits who love positive luxury.
Julia believes that transparency and sustainability are as important as craftsmanship and design, and that jewellery, a luxurious form of wearable art, should not come from a place of exploitation, pain and suffering or adverse environmental impact.
By purchasing Fairtrade gold jewellery from a Fairtrade registered jeweller like Julia, you are not just purchasing a beautiful statement piece that will make you stand out from the crowd and feel fabulous… you are supporting a small creative business owner which includes everyone in the supply chain, most importantly families in the small scale artisanal mining communities.
Julia also teaches couples to design and make their own wedding bands. Throughout Fairtrade Fortnight she is making a very special offer of 10% off to all couples who book onto her Wedding Ring Day Course and select Fairtrade gold as their precious metal of choice. You can use your happy day as a force for good by choosing Fairtrade gold. Contact Julia for more information and to make your booking.
Find out more about Julia Thompson Jewellery and shop the collection:
La Juniper was started with the aim of celebrating homes and gift giving, with the focus on conscientious consumerism.
When Home of Juniper was started in 2016, it was important to them that there was thought behind the home and gift products on the site. Their aim is to spread positivity while selling beautiful and useful things.
Home of Juniper sell a distinctive collection of products; including well-being ranges, kitchenware, stationery, home decor, textiles and gifts. Products are carefully chosen not only for their usefulness and beauty, but also for their provenance.
They treasure the stories behind the products they sell and carefully research the companies and individuals they work with.
La Juniper supports British designers and makers and ethical craftsmanship from further afield. By concentrating on the stories and people behind the products, they aim to create a unique and positive buying experience.
Positivity is one of the most important parts of Home of Juniper, not just in the items sold, but in how they are created and who creates them. At Home of Juniper you can find a variety of products at a range of prices. Their Fair Trade range includes jewellery, accessories, soft-furnishings, notebooks, drinking glasses, candle holders, baskets, soap dishes and much more.
They plan to introduce new Fair Trade companies this year and a larger range of Fair Trade items so watch this space!
10% from all sales of bee items goes to their partner charity BBCT.
Throughout Fairtrade Fortnight you can get 15% off and free postage with code ethical15
Find out more about La Juniper and shop now:
Lily & Mortimer
Jayne Harvey found inspiration for her business name Lily & Mortimer from her children, Ava Lily and William Mortimer. Just over a year ago she left corporate life to start her own venture, for several reasons. Jayne has always been passionate about developing great products, finding the highest quality ingredients and craftmanship. In her search for natural, quality bedding and sleepwear she discovered it was harder to find then you might think.
Secondly, Jayne has always believed that the business of doing business is to make the world a better place, and through this you and your business will thrive. She wants to show that everyone, from her valued customers to the farmers that grow their organic cotton, can benefit from Lily & Mortimer. This is why they will always be committed to organic and Fairtrade.
Jayne set to work creating a business that promotes positive living, working in a way that reflects her personal values and beliefs. This was the start point for their Sleep Well, Live Well philosophy.
Since moving to Asia, Jayne has enjoyed some incredible experiences and learned so much from living in a different culture. The communities she has visited and worked with have inspired her – the way that people, with so little, pull together to ensure everyone has food, and shelter. With this tenacity exhibited by these extraordinary people comes a desire not only to work hard but to self-improve.
As a result Jayne wants her business to contribute to communities and projects, like the ones she has come to know in Asia, where people are already doing so much to help themselves but can really benefit from some support to build a better life. The Sleep Well, Live Well Programme is dedicated to their mission to promote a world where everyone can sleep soundly.
From Boll to Bed
Lily & Mortimer have sourced the highest quality, long staple, organic cotton for their bedding which means the only thing that should happen is it gets softer with every wash. From the hand printed designs, beautiful embroidery to the natural coconut buttons, Jayne has taken care of every detail meaning you can shop with confidence.
They work with Chetna Organic to ensure farmers are paid a fair price for their cotton, and with Fairtrade and GOTS certified manufacturers for our production. These partners ensure everyone is paid a living wage and put programmes in place that benefit the whole community.
Jayne says she loved visiting the factory and seeing how Rajat and his family invest in good working conditions for their employees – plus they also make a great lunch!
How your bedding feels to sleep in is dependent on the quality of the cotton. Lily & Mortimer always use 100% cotton – no polyester mix here! Plus no nasty chemicals are used to treat or preshrink the bedding. Their bedding range is independently certified organic and Fairtrade.
To celebrate Fairtrade Fortnight you can get free shipping on all UK orders using code freeship and 20% off all duvet and pillow sets using code fair.
Find out more about Lily & Mortimer and shop now:
The Foodies Larder
The Foodies Larder are proud to be based in Exeter, Devon and have made it their business to source fabulous Fairtrade coffee from the world’s finest coffee growing regions, farmers and roasters.
Their commitment to environmentally and socially sustainable practices is particularly reflected in a brand-new range of innovative, biodegradable coffee capsules filled with single origin, Organic, Fairtrade, Rainforest Alliance and Swiss Water® Decaffeinated Arabica coffees.
The trio of capsules in their new ‘Delectable Range’ are filled with the finest organic, Fairtrade coffees from around the world and the capsules themselves are 100% compostable and biodegradable.
Regular aluminium and plastic coffee capsules can take anywhere between 150 and 500 years to breakdown in landfill. In contrast, The Foodies Larder capsules (compatible with Nespresso® machines) are the ultimate in eco coffee convenience. They’re made from corn starch and will disintegrate within 6 months, whether thrown into standard rubbish bins or council food waste collection bins.
The good news for Decaf lovers is that they can now enjoy the UK’s very first compostable, Swiss Water Decaf coffee capsule filled with Fairtrade and organic coffee. Using an all-natural and 100% chemical-free decaffeination process, these capsules are good for you and the environment. They produce a smooth mug of coffee with roasted peanut and cookie dough notes.
Alongside the Decaf sits a single origin, organic coffee from the Ethiopian region of Yirgacheffe, considered the birthplace of coffee and known for producing some of the most prized Arabica beans in the world. It is ‘Strictly High Grown’ under shade by their Fairtrade smallholder farmers so every time you enjoy a mug you’re helping families and local communities thrive in the region.
Completing the eco-capsule range is their single origin Peruvian coffee. The beans themselves grow slowly under shade in the mountain valleys of northern Peru, developing a fruity acidity and smooth syrupy sweetness.
Their Peruvian coffee is organic and Rainforest Alliance certified too, grown in harmony with the environment by their smallholder and Fairtrade coffee farmers, helping them maintain the unique biodiversity of their surrounds.
Filled with 10% more coffee than standard Nespresso capsules, the range is the perfect way to help Nespresso lovers switch to capsules that don’t cost the Earth, while helping Faitrade farmers break the stranglehold of poverty prices.
Find out more about The Foodies Larder and shop now:
Tootsievalentine® is an independent, British, fine designer jewellery brand creating wearable objects of affection.
Their story began with the desire to design a collection of cherished, precious keepsakes. Stemming from a lifelong obsession with attaching beloved trinkets and curios around wrists, necks and tucked away into pockets; this fixation evolved into beautiful, luxurious and ardent jewels. Heartfelt symbolism links their collections together and it is this compulsion that sparks the creative process of each piece.
Every piece is made to order and beautifully crafted in England, using the finest and most sustainable precious metals.
Tootsievalentine® were granted their Fairtrade licence back in 2012 and were one of the first 50 companies worldwide to be given the licence when Fairtrade gold was first launched.
Their business has evolved from bespoke designs and wedding ring commissions to creating fashion-forward, wearable luxury with an ethical and sustainable focus. They officially relaunched in September 2017 and have an ongoing commitment to continually seek ethical and ecologically sound processes and materials in order to look after and protect those natural resources.
The majority of their pieces are made using Fairtrade gold. The rest are made using recycled gold. The Fairtrade gold we use originates from the Macdesa or Sotrami small-scale mines of Western Peru.
For the consumer this means that there is a fully transparent supply chain from the mine where the gold came from, all the way through to the finished piece of jewellery. This offers peace of mind that there is no corruption, no exploitation, there is minimal environmental damage (compared to large scale global mining corporations) and consumers are contributing to a greater good.
Crucially, the Fairtrade gold means that the small scale artisanal miners are receiving a fair price for the gold they mine, investing in the community and the surroundings areas.
Through the Fairtrade Premium they receive, they are able to continue and improve basic services such as electricity, healthcare and education and rebuild schools and health centres.
The money that they receive also gets reinvested back into the mining processes; helping to purchase better health and safety equipment, safe access to the mines, new equipment to increase productivity and generate financial security for the surrounding mining communities and their families.
Find out more about Tootsievalentine® and shop now:
#EthicalHour – supporting people around the world
At Ethical Hour, we provide training support and advice to help ethically-focused businesses and organisations grow. We create resources and campaigns like this one to help people live and work more ethically, and we’re passionate about forming a global community with positive impact.
We offer as much of this support as possible for free to make sure we reach and help as many people as we can. We do charge for some of our premium resources, as well as sponsorship and advertising opportunities, and this allows us to invest in growing the #EthicalHour network even further.
We’re also proud to support Lend With Care – a microfinance initiative which connects entrepreneurs in developing countries with people ready to invest in their businesses and help them grow.
We invest some of our profits in a Lend With Care fund, which we then use to invest in entrepreneurs looking for financial support. Once they repay their loan, we will choose another entrepreneur to invest in, and the process starts again!
Thanks to our Fairtrade Fortnight sponsors, We’ve been able to grow the #EthicalHour network further, raise awareness of Fair Trade around the world and invest our profits in another entrepreneur through Lend With Care.
The Mayankho group are based in the district of Balaka in Malawi. The group is made up of 12 women who are all married and have children who rely on them. The women are all running different small businesses in their community which include the selling of fish, vegetables, groceries and clothes. They require a loan to buy more products and boost their business. We have invested in their loan fund to help them get to their target, grow their businesses and support their community.
(We support Lend With Care on an ongoing basis. Find out more about our ethical values and organisations we support here).
(Please note, #EthicalHour is in no way affiliated with the Fairtrade Foundation or other Fairtrade organisations – other than being a strong advocate and supporter because we believe in what they do!)