Fairtrade Forum hails ‘Fortnight’ a success

FAIRTRADE Fortnight was hailed a great success when Montrose Fairtrade Forum met last Thursday.

The venue, Montrose Academy canteen, had proved ideal – one half was used for the seating and presentation area and the other for stalls. Both speakers – John McAllion and Malawian Fairtrade sugar producer Masauko Khembo – delivered enthusing and interesting talks which were well received by the attendees.

The Forum is very grateful to all those local businesses, caterers, retailers and others who generously donated raffle prizes and to Scotmid for the £100 vouchers used to buy biscuits/juice/tea/coffee for the evening as well as those who had stalls at the event.

The evening (raffle/tea and coffee donations) raised a total of £49.90 for Forum funds.

The Forum’s new leaflet was launched at the annual general meeting, and 50 copies were handed out.

Despite the awful weather, the leaflet distribution last Saturday outside Scotmid and inside the Cooperative also went well, and 150 leaflets were handed out.

Retired secretary Peter Stevens has delivered leaflets to retailers, caterers and council offices, and some 1,400 have been distributed to within Montrose.

It is proposed that leaflets be distributed at local primary and secondary schools. Other means of distribution were considered.

It was suggested by Kelly Ann Dempsey that the target for achieving Zone status would perhaps be Fairtrade Fortnight 2013 as there still needs to be more information collected.

It was suggested that reports of Forum meetings be sent to local primary schools, and Kelly Ann Dempsey suggested that perhaps with the minutes a ‘fun fact’ about Fairtrade or a picture could be inserted in the e-mail.

No replacement has been found for Mr Stevens, who recently retired from the position of secretary. He has also stepped down as Montrose Churches Together representative but has not been replaced.

However, he will remain as the Forum’s archivist. And Jodi Thomson will remain as minute secretary. She will also take over the Local Fairtrade Suppliers list.

Mr Stevens sent a message of thank to the Forum for the support he had received over the years he had been involved with Fairtrade, and for the gift presented at the annual general meeting.

Chairman Ian Sykes reported that he had attended the Academy’s Fairtrade Café on March 14 and that it had been an enjoyable, well organised event.

The next meeting will be on Thursday, May 31, at 4pm in Montrose Academy.