25 February – 10 March 2019
For two particular weeks each year, we can celebrate those people who grow our food, and especially farmers who live in some of the poorest countries in the world and who are often exploited and badly paid. This year the Fairtrade Foundation is focusing on those who grow cocoa.
Almost all cocoa farmers in West Africa live in poverty. £1.86 is the amount a cocoa farmer needs to earn each day in order to achieve a living income. Currently, a typical cocoa farmer in Cote d’Ivoire lives on around 74p a day. For women the situation is even worse. They plant and harvest on the farm, look after children, carry water, collect wood, cook and clean for the family, and transport the cocoa beans to market but often with fewer rights than men. That is why the Fairtrade Foundation is campaigning for a living income for cocoa farmers in West Africa and is working with governments, chocolate companies and retailers to achieve it.
One of the simplest ways to support cocoa farmers around the world is by buying Fairtrade chocolate and cocoa. While this doesn’t immediately solve all the issues, keeping up the demand allows farmers to sell more of their cocoa on Fairtrade terms thus increasing their income. You can also watch out for, and sign, the Fairtrade Foundation’s petition to the UK government. Or you can follow the campaign on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.