Fairtrade sales go up in co-operative stores

The Co-op Group and the Central England Co-operative report an increase in Fairtrade sales during Fairtrade Fortnight

Fairtrade products are in high demand in stores run by co-operative retailers.

At the Co-op Group, sales of the own brand standard pack of bananas increased more than three times as much (240%) year-on-year in the week leading up to Fairtrade Fortnight.

A rise in demand for Fairtrade products was also seen across Fairtrade roses, which more than doubled, (170%) and Fairtrade tomatoes (320% Vs last week).

The Fortnight started on 25 February and runs until 10 March, aiming to raise awareness about support a living income for some of the world’s poorest farmers and workers. The Co-op is the UK’s largest Fairtrade convenience retailer.

Related: Fairtrade Fortnight: How you can help cocoa farmers to earn a living income

Sarah Wakefield, sustainable sourcing and fairtrade manager at the Co-op Group said: “This Fairtrade Fortnight we’re calling on shoppers to pledge to purchase more Fairtrade products so it’s really great to see that roses, bananas and tomatoes have seen such significant sales spikes already.”

The retailer, the first to stock Fairtrade tomatoes, is on course to increase its tomato sales ten-fold over the fortnight.

Fairtrade sales have also gone up at the Central England Co-operative, where shoppers spent £7.4m on Fairtrade products in 2018, 14% more than in the previous 12 months.

The society also revealed an increase in customer spending on Fairtrade products during Fairtrade Fortnight itself in 2018, up 12% from 2017.

Fairtrade bananas, sugar, chocolate brownies, flapjacks and wine were among the top selling products at Central England. Martin Hill, the society’s head of product and category, said: “As a co-operative retailer, ethical trading is of significant importance to us and we are committed to both promoting and growing the range of delicious Fairtrade products in our Food Stores.”