My response to Sainsbury's CEO Mike Coupe.
Aug 3, 2017 — Thanks again for signing my petition about Sainsbury's 'fairly traded' tea. I'm writing because you might have seen Sainbury's reply.
This response from Mike Coupe, CEO, seeks to defend the company’s switch away from Fairtrade certification on their own brand ‘fairly traded‘ tea, but goes no way to explain why a reputable supermarket, which claims to be the world’s biggest retailer of Fairtrade goods, is moving away from the Fairtrade Mark and the independent standards it represents. A worrying blog post by NGO Bananalink shows that Sainsbury’s may be considering extending this approach to bananas as well. Read the blog here: http://bit.ly/2wa3c1e
Fairtrade is special and unique. Independent research shows it is the most trusted and recognised of ethical Marks. This is because Fairtrade uses independent certification, has demonstrated significant impact over the last 20 years and is accountable to many stakeholders - the most important ones being farmers and growers - and has a global, grassroots supporter movement behind it.
Mike Coupe’s response, and the link to their ‘fairly traded’ site, still leaves many issues of concern unanswered. Sainsbury’s could achieve the laudable aims Mike Coupe outlines by staying with Fairtrade, working inside the system to keep the benefits of shared effort, the transparency of independent audits, and the ability of farmers to say how their income is spent - as well as making the additional investments he promises on climate change and tackling long-term security in food supply chains. This really then would be additional ethical investment and would demonstrate Sainsbury’s leadership and concern for farmers and workers and their shoppers.
It's clear from the responses and comments on this petition site that people trust Fairtrade more than they trust Sainsbury’s. I started this petition as a long time campaigner and it's supported by major charities, faith groups and NGOs working in the field. For more information read the joint agencies statement here: http://bit.ly/2unMn0M
You can also read the Fairtrade producers’ open letter found here: http://bit.ly/2unxED1
And please read the Fairtrade Foundation FAQs here: http://bit.ly/2u72moV
Mr Coupe says the door is open to continued work with Fairtrade, so come on Mr Coupe, listen to your shoppers and please put the Fairtrade Mark back on your tea!
Please keep sharing and signing my petition.