Retailers and traders in the Oxfordshire town can be proud of their new status, which, among other criteria, applauds the wide use of fairly traded products sold or offered to customers .
The granting of Fairtrade Town status is one of the functions of the Fairtrade Foundation. To achieve it, a town has to meet five goals. These are:
The Local Council passes a resolution supporting Fairtrade, and agrees to serve Fairtrade coffee and tea at its meetings and in its offices and canteens. Both the Abingdon Town council and the Vale of White Horse District Council passed the appropriate resolutions.
A range of at least two Fairtrade products are readily available in the area's shops. Fairtrade products are served in local cafes/catering establishments. The target number is 1 of each category (retail and catering) per 5,000 population. The Abingdon area achieved the requisite numbers, based on its population of 35,000.
Fairtrade products are used by a number of local work places (estate agents, hairdressers etc) and community organisations (churches, schools etc). Abingdon achieved the required numbers for both categories (workplaces and community organisations).
Attract media coverage and popular support for the campaign. During the three years it took to meet the goals, regular press coverage was achieved, mostly in the Abingdon Herald.
A local Fairtrade steering group is convened to ensure continued commitment to its Fairtrade Town Status. From the beginning, a small group of people was formed to seek Fairtrade Town status. It was convened under the auspices of the Abingdon Chamber of Trade. The Convenor of Abingdon Traidcraft Group has been an active member of the Steering Group. The Group is now wanting to extend its membership in order to further the promotion of Fair Trade.