We are so grateful, more than ever this year, to have so many loyal customers, old and new. It goes without saying that 2020 has been a bit of an unprecedented and difficult year for us all, but we have seen so many people continue to shop with us whenever the shop has been open, and it has also been brilliant to see the uptake on our new Click & Collect service which we managed to get up and running in time for the second lockdown in November.
As I’m sure our customers are aware, every penny spent on fairly traded products is well spent. The premise of Fairtrade is that it offers a minimum price to producers for their produce even if prices in the global market drop below this level, meaning producers won’t slip into poverty or make a loss. The Fairtrade price paid by consumers 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.
Of course the global pandemic has very adversely affected our producer communities, due to uncertainty in the markets and reduction in both travel and trade. However, being a part of Fairtrade has meant that our producer organisations have continued to receive their Fairtrade Premium funds, which they have been allowed to spend more flexibly during the pandemic, for instance, to pay out as emergency cash payments, purchase face masks or other PPE, or implement hygiene campaigns.
So by supporting us, you have been able to support all our producers and suppliers all over the world. THANK YOU.
We are also thankful for the small things and the glimmers of hope that have come out of the coronavirus situation. We hope that the #buildbackbetter campaign continues to spread the word that it is time to tackle inequality and fight to look after our planet better.
We also would like to give a big shout out to all our volunteers. They are the backbone of our operation (for most of this year we only had one paid member of staff) and we couldn’t do it without them!
We look forward to 2021 and all it will bring (hopefully a vaccination!), and finally: Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all our supporters!