Donegal County Council is set to explore a new strategy to support the Fairtrade mark during its daily activities.
The council has been asked to follow the example of local towns that are striving towards Fairtrade Community status.
Cllr Jack Murray proposed that the council could widely offer Fairtrade food and drink options in council offices and make them available for internal meetings as a way of promoting the Fairtrade mark.
“Even something as simple as the teas and coffees provided at our meetings or any of our functions they we may host, if they are Fairtrade and we guarantee that, I think it would be a very positive initiative,” Cllr Murray said.
Cllr Murray, speaking at Monday’s council meeting, said the council’s leadership could send a positive message to the ChangeMakers Donegal campaign. Carndonagh, Moville and Dunfanaghy have already received the prestigious Fairtrade Town Status, while Buncrana, Ballyliffin and Clonmany are working towards the title.
Cllr Murray called on the council to adopt practices such as using its influence to urge local retailers to provide Fairtrade options for residents, to urge local business to offer Fairtrade options to their staff and to engage in a media campaign to publicise the Fairtrade Towns initiative
Cllr Murray explained that Fairtrade guarantees fair prices for farmers and workers, which means they are paid a minimum price for their crops which covers their production costs and they can make a living wage. Fairtrade also encourages environmental sustainability by promoting organic farming practices, helps to protect the environment and supports gender equality and social justice and ethical consumerism.
The council adopted the motion and agreed that the Local Enterprise Office Donegal, through the Food Coast, will liaise with ChangeMakers Donegal to explore the opportunity to develop and support a strategy to facilitate and support the Fairtrade mark.