All ‘Good Countries’ have Fair Trade Towns, but who’s the Fairest of them all?



 

The Good Country Index
(Click here for higher resolution of the image.)

 

The Good Country Index announced at the TEDSalon in Berlin, measures how much each of 125 countries contributes to the planet.  With Ireland leading the table it turns out that all top ten countries are nations where a Fair Trade Town campaign is running. Is this a coincidence? I think not.

In September Oudenaarde, Belgium declared as the 154th Fair Trade Town in Flanders making half of all Flemish municipalities a Fair Trade Town and Flanders the global leader for fair trade in terms of the proportion of the population covered. Out of a total of 308 municipalities 154 are now Fair Trade Towns with an additional 74 towns working towards gaining status. In Flanders over 4¼ million inhabitants now live in a Fair Trade Town. Does this make Flanders the Fairest of them all?

The Flemish campaign added a 6th goal to the original five founding goals which was aimed at promoting local and sustainable consumption.  Congratulations Flanders on this tremendous achievement and well done to all involved!

Map of Fair Trade Towns in Flanders, Belgium (orange - 154 Fair Trade Towns, yellow - 74 additional campaigns running)


Also a big congratulations to the residents of Amsterdam, the Netherlands where in October they joined the already Fair Trade capital cities of London, Dublin, Cardiff, Edinburgh, Brussels, Rome, Paris, Madrid, Oslo, Copenhagen, Luxembourg and Wellington. As a result of this milestone declaration 27% of all Dutch people will be living in a Fair Trade Town. A quarter of all Dutch towns are now active in a Fair Trade Town campaign; 51 of them, including Amsterdam, are already Fair Trade Towns. 

Also in October we saw the Hiiu District of Estonia become their first Fair Trade Town in the country bringing the total number of nations with Fair Trade Towns to 25 and additionally Switzerland, Hungary, South Korea, Taiwan and the Lebanon having launched a campaign, but yet to declare their first Fair Trade Town. Seoul is expected to become the first Fair Trade Town in Korea and the largest Fair Trade City in the world and 10 villages in the Lebanon are expected to declare as Fair Trade Towns sometime in the future. As a member of the WFTO Fair Trade Lebanon will initially focus on promoting fairly traded local products with a particular emphasis on quality. 

It is now possible to book your place at the 8th International Fair Trade Towns conferences in Bristol, UK on the 4th/5th July 2015. With so much happening in the world of Fair Trade Towns this will provide a fantastic opportunity for Fair Trade campaigners to meet others from across the globe. With Bristol becoming the European Green Capital in 2015 The theme for the conference will be ‘Fair Trade for Sustainability’. We hope to see you there. To secure your place visit: http://www.bristolfairtrade.org.uk

For further information contact Bruce Crowther the International Fair Trade Towns Ambassador at brucecrowther300@gmail.com 

Bruce Crowther
International Fair Trade Towns Ambassador
The FIG Tree, Garstang, UK