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Backing for Fair Trade Country Bid

This article appears on the BBC News website.

The Archbishop of Wales is supporting a campaign to make Wales the world’s first Fair Trade Country offering Third World farmers a better deal.

Archbishop Barry Morgan backed the Wales Fair Trade Forum’s initiative at its launch in Cardiff on Saturday.

On St David’s Day Cardiff became the world’s first Fair Trade capital.

The city beat Edinburgh to claim the title after many of its cafés, shops, businesses, and schools showed their commitment to the partnership.

The Wales Fair Trade Forum was set up in 2000 by the Catholic Agency for Overseas Development, Christian Aid, Fair Do’s Ltd, Oxfam Cymru, Tearfund and Traidcraft.

“Many years ago, Fair Trade coffee was considered to be a penance rather than a pleasure, but that is most definitely no longer true. ”
The Archbishop of Wales

The Archbishop backed the appeal as World Fair Trade Day was celebrated on Saturday.

He said: “During the past few years we have seen several towns in Wales attain Fairtrade status including Ammanford near my native Gwaun Cae Gurwen, and Criccieth where I lived for many happy years during the early 1990s.

“And I am delighted that Cardiff was this year declared the world’s first Fair Trade capital city.

“Many years ago, Fair Trade coffee for example was considered to be a penance rather than a pleasure, but that is most definitely no longer true.

“Fair Trade coffee is now a first-class product and I choose to drink it because of its fantastic taste and not out of any sense of duty.

“Fair Trade principles make a real difference to the lives of those people who produce these products and allows us all to contribute positively to the developing world.

Jan Tucker, from Fair Trade Wales who runs the Fair Do’s Fair Trade shop in Canton in Cardiff, said the partnership was a “practical and easy way” for most people in Wales to make a difference to the lives of farmers overseas.

It helps farmers them gain access to education and health care for their children, she said.

“We want to involve not just individuals but local governments, charities, trade unions, schools – any group – and hope all these come on board.”