Here in Frome, we have a great many Fairtrade shops and store to explore. Here we interview Fine Fettle Fashion, to find out more about this ethical fashion company. They have a varied selection of fairtrade clothing, accessories, jewellery and gifts which are competitively priced. So read on to find out more…

What does Fine Fettle do?

FF is an independent retailer in the heart of Frome. We offer ethical women’s fashion of exceptional quality and at affordable prices. 

How long have you been in Frome?

 Fine Fettle opened its doors in Cheap Street in November 2013. We started our journey in Frome as a pop-up shop which soon became Fine Fettle with a longterm view towards promoting ethical fashion on the High Street. 

Why set your business up in Frome?

Not only is Frome a beautiful historic market town – it is a ‘Fairtrade Town’ with a community ready to embrace a more sustainable & ethical lifestyle. 

What 3 values do you hold most dear to your business?

Ethically sourced, sustainable quality and style with a pinch of the ‘unusual’

What Fairtrade or ethical products do you sell?

A large variety of fair-trade/ethical clothing, jewellery and accessories. 

Where do you get supplies from?

We support a large number of small producers from all over the world as well as British and even locally produced ranges. 

What makes you use fairtrade or ethical products?

We really do believe it is the way forward – an environment where people receive a fair wage and get to work in safe conditions using more sustainable materials. In return, our customers get to enjoy an item of clothing or jewellery of great quality and style – a purchase they can feel good about in every way! 

Do your customers know you use Fairtrade or ethical products?

We are constantly promoting our fairtrade products – chatting to our customers in the shop, through promotions such as special offers (also mentioned on social media i.e. Facebookand local events i.e. Frome fashion show a few month ago. 

Favourite ethical product?

I love a good organic cotton T-shirt made with care using organic dyes! But apart from that fairtrade coffee all the way and love Oxfam’s fairtrade shower & bath products!

 

Find out more about Fine Fettle Fashion here – over on their Facebook page.

Photo credit: Fine Fettle Fashion. 

Frome Chocolate Festival celebrated its 8th anniversary this year and we were there to promote the Fairtrade message. 

 Every year is a fantastic event –  a fabulous collection of Chocolatiers, Artisan cake makers, raw chocolate experts, confectioners and sweet makers. There were chocolate bars, truffles, unusual chocolate gifts and seasonal delights. 

 This year the event also highlighted and supported Frome Children’s Festival, which provided activities to keep the younger visitors happy. Local charity WHY (We Hear You) also held a chocolate raffle and sold Christmas cards.

We ran some fun competitions – guess the number of Fairtrade chocolate coins in the jar and a taste test – to see if people could tell the difference between fairtrade and non-fairtrade chocolate. Thankfully, Fairtrade won!

We will be back there next year, so watch this space! Find out who stocks Fairtrade chocolate here!

As part of the ‘Don’t ditch Fairtrade’ weekend campaign on 28th October, Frome residents delivered a petition to Steve Jones, Sainsbury’s Frome Manager to challenge Sainsbury’s decision to abandon the Fairtrade mark on some of its own-brand tea in favour of its own scheme.
 
Fairtrade Frome members Judy Annan and Ann Taylor who organised the event, said: “It’s estimated nearly a quarter of a million tea farmers and workers will be affected by this move. We wanted to bring attention to the residents of Frome the ‘Don’t Ditch Fairtrade’ campaign and the fact that Sainsbury’s is changing their stance to Fairtrade. British tea drinkers account for three-quarters of Fairtrade tea sales globally, with Sainsbury’s as the world’s largest retailer of Fairtrade. Sainsbury’s has previously been a true leader in the retail sector with their support of Fairtrade products, making a real difference to the lives of workers and their families in some of the world’s poorest countries. We’d like them to reconsider this step away from Fairtrade for their own-brand tea.”
 
Fairtrade guarantees tea producers receive an additional premium payment – on top of the price for their tea – to invest in their businesses and communities as they see fit. Frome campaigners are concerned that tea farmers will lose control of the social premium they would earn under Sainsbury’s alternative scheme, with suppliers instead having to apply to a UK-based board for their funding. 
 
The protests are part of a nationwide campaign supported by CAFOD, Christian Aid, The Women’s Institute, Traidcraft Exchange and Tearfund calling on the supermarket to reconsider this pilot scheme.
 
Fairtrade Frome also said stated “We’re worried that standards will be controlled by Sainsbury’s – and are not set independently. Tea farmers will not be represented in the scheme’s governance – a stark contrast to Fairtrade certification where producers are part of deciding how standards are set, monitored and reviewed.”
Fairtrade Frome was established as the 11th Fairtrade town in Britain more than 15 years ago and has encouraged Sainsbury’s from the very beginning to include Fairtrade goods in their store.
 
To find out more about us check out our website here fairtradefrome.org.uk