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30 ways to celebrate 30 years of Fairtrade

This year we’ll be celebrating a very special Fairtrade Fortnight.

It will take place in the autumn for the first time when we will celebrate 30 years of the FAIRTRADE Mark here in the UK. This means 30 years of farmers using the power of Fairtrade to drive positive change in their communities.

Instead of waiting until September 2024, we’ve put together 30 ways you can get the ball rolling. How many can you finish before Fortnight 2024 ends?

1. Sign up to get our emails – never miss our latest news! 

If you don’t already get our email updates, fix that today by signing up for our Fairtrade ‘Latest news’ emails. That way, you’ll never miss an opportunity to get involved in our work to build a fairer future.

2. Sign your local Community Declaration on Climate Justice

Over 15,000 people and over 1,000 groups have already signed our Community Declarations on Climate Justice. You can sign as an individual, a school, a Fairtrade group, or any other organisation.

Once you’ve signed, remember to share to get your friends and family to join you.

3. Say it with flowers

We all love to give and receive flowers to celebrate a special occasion. To mark 30 years of our Mark, you could send a friend a special thank you and, at the same time, introduce them to the benefits of Fairtrade flowers.

They deliver a fairer deal for thousands of farm workers in East Africa and Central America.

4. Write a letter

Thirty years in, people still need to find out why choosing Fairtrade is so important. The students at Ballycarrickmaddy Primary School have been working on how to persuade important people in business, politics and their community to join them in building a fairer future.

Their excellent guide on writing a persuasive letter includes great tips for everyone.

5. Start a petition

Supporting us isn’t just about signing petitions – you can start one too! Get a bit of inspiration from the children at St. Peter’s Catholic Primary School – they started a petition urging the UK government to start including Fairtrade bananas in their Free Fruit and Vegetables scheme.

6. Quiz night? Try one of ours!

Everyone loves a quiz. We’ve created a few to try, or you can use the following information to make your own.

7. Make a smoothie

There is no better way to get your ‘5 a day’ than a nice smoothie. There are so many Fairtrade ingredients that are just perfect for smoothies: bananas, mangoes, orange juice, peanut butter, honey, nuts and spices.

Make your smoothie, then ‘smoothly’ start a conversation about how each of those ingredients means a fairer deal for so many farmers and workers all around the world.

8. Get creative in the kitchen

It’s been 30 years since the FAIRTRADE Mark hit UK shelves, and you can now cook up all sorts of tasty treats using the over 6,000 Fairtrade products available across the country.

Whether it’s banana brownies or pasta bakes, classy cocktails or coffee-flavoured cookies, the quickest way to the heart is through the stomach – so build your friends and family’s love for Fairtrade with some delicious dishes.

9. Make an exhibition of yourself – and us!

Whether it’s poetry, painting, music, or crafting, getting creative is a great way to spread the word about the difference choosing Fairtrade makes.

For example, in 2020, thousands of young people took part in our Choose the World you Want exhibition to mark Fairtrade Fortnight. Try running your own exhibition or competition in your community, school or university.

10. Get social – online!

Social media lets us connect with other Fairtrade fans from all over the country and beyond. It also tells people about the power of Fairtrade.

As we mark 30 years, take inspiration from the Felixstowe Fairtrade Forum’s excellent recent efforts in upping their social media game.

11. Have a break – have a coffee morning

A classic with our campaigners, old and new, nothing gets people listening to the benefits of Fairtrade better than a break and a few top-quality coffees, teas and snacks.

Hosting our coffee morning in a local Oxfam book and record shop helped us reach the public, as people out shopping were attracted in by our free teas and coffees.

Anita Beer, a campaigner in Market Harborough

12. Be a star of screen – host a film night

There’s lots of films that showcase why choosing Fairtrade is always the best choice for people and the planet.

13. Take the taste test – run a tasting session of treats

Thirty years after our first products, some people still don’t realise Fairtrade goodies don’t just power positive change. They taste great, too!

While they are tasting, take the time to explain the positive effect these palate-pleasers have in communities worldwide.

Campaigner top-tip

Pair some Fairtrade wine with some chocolate. Did you know that lighter chocolate pairs well with lighter wines? Try out the Co-op for good value options for wine and chocs.

Lily in Belfast

15. Deck the halls with (recycled) bunting

Using recycled cotton, Linlithgow Fairtrade Partnership made beautiful bunting with local youth groups. But you can use any materials to make some Fairtrade-themed bunting – it’s a great conversation starter, brightens up any space, and crafting is a great way to bring people together.

16. Hold a Fairtrade fashion show

Joanna Pollard celebrated Great Big Green Week by inviting groups of activists to upcycle some old Fairtrade Foundation t-shirts made (of course) from Fairtrade cotton.

Working with the Reading Centre for International Solidarity (RISC), Joanna also live-streamed the event on social media so people from all over could get involved.

17. Make the flowers bloom in your area

Did you know it’s easier than ever for your local florist to start stocking Fairtrade? Let them know by ordering flower postcards from us and sharing them with independent florists in your area.

Because more beautiful Fairtrade blossoms in the UK means more flower farm workers with greater rights, higher incomes, and more security all over the world, and that’s a blooming good deal!

18. Make your area a Fairtrade Community

Fairtrade Community groups work to put fairness at the heart of everything happening in their area.

You only need two like-minded people to start a group and the enthusiasm to bring our message to local people.

Already a Fairtrade Community?

Go even further by earning our special ‘Action Area’ badges.

19. Link up with a local sports team

Wolverhampton Fairtrade scored a Premier League partnership when they teamed up with Wolverhampton Wanderers. The local football group supported them in running an event that supported lots of local children to learn about us.

20. Hit the trail

Campaigners in Solihull created a Fairtrade Trail that delights old and young alike, introducing people to new places they can buy Fairtrade and the difference doing so can make.

21. Get crafty with your campaigning

Rather than printing lots of leaflets and wasting paper, many campaigners have turned to making their own engaging campaign materials in recent years.

Lots of campaigners share top tips on everything from creating FAIRTRADE Marks with old potatoes to promoting collaborative crafting sessions in their local communities.

22. Make a Fairtrade display

Whether it’s a student union, a school notice board, your local community centre or just on your fridge, make a daily reminder about the power of the fairer future the FAIRTRADE Mark means.

23. Teach them a lesson – about Fairtrade

Calling all parents, teachers and students! Did you know your school can become a Fairtrade School? We have lots of things to help you get started.

24. Have a little faith, as a Fairtrade Place of Worship

Hundreds of faith groups of all types and beliefs have signed up as a Fairtrade Place of Worship.

All you need to do is commit to stocking essential goodies and spreading the word about the FAIRTRADE Mark among your faith community.

25. Have a chat about Fairtrade with your local businesses

Speak to shops and businesses in and around your community, university, school or anywhere else about backing Fairtrade.

With over 6,000 products in the UK, it’s not just the usual suspects.

Schools could switch to Fairtrade cotton uniforms. Jewellers could start stocking Fairtrade gold. Even cafes aren’t limited to just Fairtrade tea and coffee – they could also start stocking fruit juices, lemonade and snacks made with Fairtrade cocoa or sugar.

26. Make a Fairtrade Pledge – and ask others to do the same

Ask people in your community, school or university to pledge to do one thing differently that will make the world fairer.

Schools that have done this previously have got creative – asking people to draw or illustrate their ideas on paper leaves to create a ‘forest of ethical pledges.

27. Celebrate World Fair Trade Day

On the second Saturday of every May, World Fair Trade Day is a great opportunity to listen to the voices of the people behind the products we use every day.

So, mark it in your diary as a major moment to celebrate fairer trade, and sign up for our emails to ensure you get all the tools you need to mark this special moment.

28. Try a new Fairtrade product every day or week

With over 6,000 Fairtrade products available, you could try a new Fairtrade product every day for over 16 years!

We don’t suggest you do it for that long, but perhaps try sniffing out a new treat every week for a year. Don’t forget to share the results on social media!

29. Have a bake-off

Get colleagues, classmates, or the whole community to come together and cook up some baked goodies.

The Oxford Student Union gave this a go in 2020, inviting students and staff to send their best Fairtrade efforts to a panel of hungry volunteer judges.

30. And lastly, but definitely not least – Fundraise

As a charity, we are hugely grateful for any donations – large or small. Anything you can give helps us strengthen Fairtrade all around the world and here in the UK – which means a better deal for farmers.

Our fundraising page has some ideas to get you started, but any individual or group is completely free to fundraise in whatever way they like – the more creative, the better.

Find out more about what you can do to celebrate Fairtrade Fortnight 2024