INDEPENDENT NEWS

Green MPs to sign 'fair trade coffee' pledge

Published: Thu 18 Oct 2001 11:31 AM
18 October 2001
Media advisory
Green MPs to sign 'fair trade coffee' pledge
Media Invitations: Join us for organic coffee, cake and a chat about fair trade
Green Party Caucus Room, 14th floor, 4 pm
Green Party MPs will be marking Trade Aid's 'Fair Trade Fortnight' by signing the fair trade coffee pledge to highlight the issues facing small farmers around the world and to encourage people to support fair trade.
The pledge reads: 'We the undersigned pledge to support fairly traded coffee which pays a fair price (a living wage) to coffee farmers. In so doing we reject the brands of the coffee corporates, that result in huge profits being made at the expense of millions of small coffee farmers and their families who live in poverty worldwide'.
The pledge has already been signed by prominent people such as Sam Neill, cartoonist Garrick Tremain, Chris Laidlaw and the 'bug man' Ruud Kleinpaste, as well as thousands of fair trade supporters throughout New Zealand.
"The situation for small coffee farmers and their families has never been more desperate," said Rod Donald.
"World prices are the lowest they've been in decades yet coffee sales in the so-called first world are going through the roof. The farmers in Latin America, South East Asia and Central Africa see a ridiculously low return for their labours, while transnational corporates make a killing.
"The Green Party strongly supports Trade Aid's campaign. Trading fairly, especially with developing countries and co-operative groups in those countries, is a core element of our trade and economic policy, so we are delighted to sign the pledge," said Mr Donald.
"We hope other MPs will join us in supporting coffee farming families being able to earn a living wage so they can stay on their land, provide education for their children and implement safe working conditions and health programmes."
ENDS

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