UK: Tesco to double commitment to Fairtrade cotton school uniforms
by Redaktion (comments: 0)
In response to calls from school and college students across the UK for an end to uniforms made under appalling conditions, the supermarket chain Tesco has agreed to double the number of Fairtrade cotton school uniforms they stock, the Fairtrade Foundation reports. The student campaigning group People & Planet has called this a dramatic success for their new 'Wear Fair' campaign, which aims for all UK schools to have Fairtrade cotton uniforms by 2015. The number of Fairtrade lines offered by Tesco will be increased by over 50 %, while the volume of sales is projected to grow by 85 % in 2010/11. This will make them the UK's leading retailer for Fairtrade cotton school uniforms, pushing them ahead of Marks & Spencers. At a time of severe economic crisis for cotton growers in places like India and West Africa, this announcement is of great significance and shows the Fairtrade movement continuing to grow in strength.
Research commissioned by People & Planet showed that around 70 % of school and college students wanted their uniforms to be made from Fairtrade cotton. Students in the campaigning group then launched a nationwide campaign last September to make this happen. There is also a growing concern amongst parents. Students from the campaigning organisation are now collecting 6000 photos of support demanding increased sales of Fairtrade cotton school uniforms. They plan to deliver them to their next target, Asda, a supermarket that, students claim, has failed to make any progress on Fairtrade cotton school uniforms. Their aim, they say, is for all major retailers and independent uniform stores to follow Tesco's lead in fighting the exploitation in the cotton trade.
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