COMEDIAN Harry Hill, suitably attired in a specially-made Co-op store assistant's shirt complete with his trademark stand-up collar, is pictured at the Co-operative Group's new Welcome store in Fulham, to launch the start of Fairtrade Fortnight (1-13 March).
The Co-op is putting its full weight, including TV advertising, behind national Fairtrade Fortnight following a momentous 12 months in which the retailer has made dramatic in-roads into making Fairtrade mainstream.
During 2004, the Co-op more than doubled the size of its own-label range of Fairtrade products and- thanks to the latest additions ? the Co-op now has a listing of some 100 Fairtrade products*.
The stand-up comedian was pleasantly surprised to see the variety of Fairtrade products at the Co-op store, including pineapples, grapes, mangoes, Easter Eggs, wine and drinking chocolate.
Harry commented: `It' s interesting to see how many different products they've got here. When I started to work for Fairtrade there was a very narrow range, but there's been a phenomenal increase. I think a lot of it has grown through word of mouth and it's gradually filtered through. It just shows if you have a good idea people will respond to it.`
Harry, who travelled to Ghana three years ago to visit Fairtrade banana and cocoa growers, added: `When you go there and see it for yourself you appreciate straight away the benefits of Fairtrade. I saw a well which had been paid for by the extra money which goes to the growers. This had transformed village life. People came from miles around to use the well, which meant they didn't have to use water from the river and risk disease.`
Harry Hill is pictured with Pendar Khomarlu at the North End Road, Fulham, store.