WYCOMBE FOR FAIRTRADE
Minutes of meeting: 26th October 2017
Avenue Methodist Church, Rutland Avenue
Mike King Bob Smith
Sheena King Maggie Smith
Sarah Moroz Tony Thornby
MK – re: Sainsbury’s ‘Fairly Traded’ tea – this dis-empowers the growers. This was talked about at the National Supporters Conference – Oxfam and the Co-op gave very good speeches against it. The FT Foundation has been moving away from the certification procedure and seem to be concentrating more on trade deals. They took more of a middle stance at the conference (Sainsbury’s are still a big seller of FT, even apart from the change with their tea). There is a day of action against Sainsbury’s on Saturday. MK suggests that we should write a letter to the manager at Sainsbury’s, High Wycombe.
JM – there is a template for a letter on the FT Found’n website. The change to the Sainsbury’s tea may be the ‘thin end of the wedge’ and other products may follow.
TT – asks whether the general public really understands the effect of Sainsbury’s action on the FT premium.
SM – suggests that we all look at the template letter before Saturday and e-mail to SM any suggested changes. Then anyone who can make it, meet at Sainsbury’s at 10am and hand the letter in to the manager there.
JM – Barbara Gwinnett, the chair of the NCC (National Campaigner Committee) was at the conference – she orchestrated the Change.org petition against Sainsbury’s. Also at the conference there was a talk about a FT producers’ group in Ghana where the premium has paid for the workers to be bussed in.
MK – was very impressed by the session led by Catherine Davison of the FT Found’n – Head of Innovation. There was talk of using social media and new technology. She went through the 9 sustainability goals
MK – the FT Found’n have been talking to Nespresso.
JM – FT gold was also discussed at the conference. There is an exhibition of photos that can be hired. The situation for miners is worse than that for farmers helped by FT.
JM – his contact in CLAC is moving to another co-operative in November but he has contacted JM to say that there are 3 or 4 FT towns being created in Latin America. It would also be good to have a link with our council.
MK – would need to have a meeting with Suzanne Brown (Chair of Wycombe DC) to discuss how our council could be involved.
SM – there are two possibilities – a link with a FT town in Latin America and a link with a producer group
MK – we could invite the High Commissioner of St Vincent to present our renewal certificate
JM – suggested the setting up of a ‘Twinning’ or ‘Partnership’ arrangement between FT towns
TT – we need to know what the aims or expectations of such a set-up would be. With the current twinning relationship between English and European towns, the geographical nearness means that exchange visits can take place.
MK – it would be interesting to know where Bewley’s coffee comes from.
JM – will share a link to an article on this ‘twinning’ idea from the International FT conference in Germany earlier this year and will also ask his contact, Marco, what ideas he has about the twinning arrangements
SM – perhaps we could give some thought to having an exhibition of the FT gold photographs etc
TT – Beaverbrooks may want to have some involvement
SK – she is on the Mission team at Christ the Servant King and has asked if we could have another grant of £250. Their Chairperson, Heather Searle, has asked to have copies of our minutes. SK has also done an article for the Booker issue of their church magazine.
SK – will investigate the public liability insurance arrangement that has been set up by the FT Found’n with ‘Case Insurance’ for groups to get insurance
BS – had a look on the FT schools website and Highcrest School is listed as ‘impending’ for FT status.
SM – if we manage to arrange a talk from a producer, we could do this jointly with Highcrest
MK – for FT Fortnight next year, we could ask for a slot on Wycombe Sound’ again.
TT – re: producing and updating our website – we would need to sort out content.
Next meeting: Monday 27th Nov / Tuesday 28th Nov TBC