‘Bring back the Fairtrade Mark!’ is the message in an open letter signed by nearly 200 local residents.
Customers presented an open letter to the manager of Sainsbury’s Pinner store in late August as part of a continuing national campaign directed at the supermarket chain.
The Fairtrade Mark on tea, coffee, chocolate and thousands of other top quality goods confirms the growers and producers have been paid enough to earn a living together with a premium which they use to benefit their communities. It helps them to work their way out of poverty.
But last year Sainsbury’s dropped the Fairtrade Mark from their own-brand tea.
Sainsbury’s customer and local resident Elizabeth Thorp said, ‘Sainsbury’s are calling their tea ‘Fairly Traded’ but it’s not the same as the Fairtrade Mark. It’s completely controlled by Sainsbury’s. Tea farmers want to stay with the Fairtrade Mark system.
‘We want Sainsbury’s to return to obtaining Fairtrade Mark certification for all their own-brand tea.
‘Until then, the best thing for everyone to do is choose tea which does carry the Fairtrade Mark and avoid tea which doesn’t.
‘Here in Pinner there’s lots of Fairtrade Mark tea in, for example, Marks & Spencer’s Simply Food and the Oxfam shop.’