Australia’s most Fairtrade friendly supermarkets announced

Posted by Daniel Palmer on 10th June 2009

The Checkout Fairtrade search has discovered Australia’s Most Fairtrade Friendly Supermarkets, with Victorian independent supermarket Leo’s Fine Food & Wine in Kew and Coles Belmont in New South Wales claiming the top honours, the Fair Trade Association of Australia and New Zealand (FTAANZ) announced today.

Checkout Fairtrade aimed to find the supermarket store stocking the biggest range of Fairtrade Certified and Labelled products in the country.

FTAANZ Operations Manager Cameron Neil said from the entries sent in by Aussie shoppers across the country, Leo’s Fine Food & Wine was found to be the Most Fairtrade Friendly Independent Supermarket with a total of 32 Fairtrade products on its shelves, while the Coles outlet in Belmont, just south of Newcastle, was the Most Fairtrade Friendly Major Supermarket, stocking over 25 Fairtrade products.

“We congratulate Leo’s Fine Food & Wine and Coles Belmont, for their commitment to Fairtrade by stocking and selling such a wide range of Fairtrade Certified and Labelled products,” Mr Neil said. “These stores are helping lead the way for supermarkets across the country to become more Fairtrade friendly and in turn helping make a real difference in tackling poverty and empowering producers across the globe.”

The more Fairtrade Certified and Labelled products supermarkets stock, the more opportunities Aussie shoppers have to buy them, with every dollar spent on Fairtrade products equalling a vote for a better future for developing country producers and their families,” he added. “It means they can send their kids to school, build roads and access better health care – all things we take for granted in Australia every day.”

Mr Neil said that, while Australian sales of Fairtrade products were growing strongly (rising more than 80% in 2008 to $23 million) and supermarkets across the country, including Coles, Woolworths and ALDI continued to demonstrate a commitment to stocking and supporting such products (including through the development of their own Fairtrade Certified and Labelled products such as the Coles Finest Fairtrade Coffee Signature Blend), the range available remained limited to coffee, tea, chocolate and nuts.

“In contrast, shoppers in Europe and particularly the UK, can choose from a huge range of Fairtrade products at their local supermarket, including rice, sugar, orange juice, roses, muesli, marmalade, ground cinnamon and even peanut butter,” he advised.

“With the potential for Australian supermarkets to provide consumers with many more Fairtrade options, the competition also asked shoppers for their ideas on how to make Aussie supermarkets more Fairtrade friendly for their chance to win a Fairtrade prize pack valued at $2000,” he said.

Mr Neil congratulated Lorna Bateman of Belmont, NSW for submitting not only the winning idea but for also entering the winning major supermarket store – Coles Belmont.

“Lorna’s suggestion of a Fair Dinkum Fairtrade in-store promotion was judged the best entry based on its creativity and combination of the Aussie idea of a “fair day’s pay for a fair day’s work” which is at the very heart of what Fairtrade is about,” he said.

Both supermarkets will be given their Awards at special presentations to be held tomorrow (Thursday, 11 June 2009) at both stores.

“The thousands of people across the country who took part in over 500 activities and events, including Fairtrade coffee breaks, fiestas, stalls, coffee tastings and competitions, have helped make this year’s Fortnight the biggest yet and we look forward to building on that success in 2010,” Mr Neil said.