There’s nothing like a global pandemic to force small businesses to adapt, and at Headington Fairtrade, we are no exception. Setting up our new website (which you are reading!) and organising a Click & Collect online shop within the space of a month was no mean feat, but we felt that it was important to make it as easy to buy from us as from a big-box retailer. Now that the November lockdown is over, our shop doors are open again, but the Click & Collect service remains active (and we are adding to it all the time) and we hope it will continue to be an easy (and safe) way for many of our customers to shop.
Supporting small businesses has never been more important. Not only have local shops been instrumental in keeping communities going during lockdowns, but we have also been hardest hit. If you do your Christmas shopping locally, the proceeds will stay in the UK (because we do not use tax havens!), but are also likely to be spent locally too; employing local people, businesses and services.
As small businesses go, we are particularly ethical, being, as we are, a fair trade shop. Not only do our profits go straight back into the shop and the community (we run on a not-for-profit basis), but the fairtrade nature of our goods means that the suppliers and producers are receiving a minimum price for their produce, even if prices in the global market drop below this level. The price paid by consumers of fairtrade also contains a ‘premium’ which is an amount of money on top of the price of the product. This premium is used for investment in local projects and infrastructure such as better sanitation, schools and local medical facilities. So you can be assured that your money is going straight to the people who need it most.
The other great thing about fairtrade is that it protects our planet. There are a number of environmental criteria that farmers and producers must adhere to which include sourcing water sustainably and reducing water use, not using GMOs and minimising the use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides. In addition to this, the shop also stocks plenty of things which can help you with reducing your personal plastic consumption: eco cleaning products, shampoo, conditioner and body wash refills and other environmentally friendly products such as reusable water bottles and coffee cups.
So if you are looking for an ethical and sustainable local shop in which to do your Christmas shopping, look no further. We sell a huge variety of excellent gifts; from colourful wooden toys like jigsaws and push-alongs, to gorgeous hammered brass earrings, to soft blankets, wooly hats and felted silk scarves, to chocolate, fudge and really good coffee. We have also put together three different sorts of food hamper for the recipient who already has everything they need.
We would love your support over the next few weeks, both in the shop and online, so please, make the decision to shop local, shop ethically, choose fairtrade and support small businesses.