Going bananas at Bicton College

Students and staff at Bicton College will be taking part in a worldwide banana eating event on Friday, March 6.

Students and staff at Bicton College will be taking part in a worldwide banana eating event on Friday, March 6.

The 200 banana munch off will take place at 12.45pm, with students and staff joining thousands of people across the world attempting to set a record for the largest number of Fair Trade bananas eaten over a 24 hour period.

This international Fair Trade event is designed to highlight the plight of banana farmers across the world. Bicton College is taking part in Fair Trade Fortnight again this year with an exhibition of paintings and Fair Trade craft products in the College library, Fair Trade eats in the dining room and the Go Bananas finale including a 'compost hot shot', on Friday 6th March.

Geoff Jones, sustainability co-ordinator at Bicton College said, "The College currently sources a range of Fair Trade products including tea, coffee, hot chocolate and sugar. Much of the fruit and some of the confectionary on sale are also from Fair Trade sources and the plan is to steadily increase the range of products available. Lots of the produce used in the College restaurant is sourced locally, including beef, lamb and pork from Bicton Home Farm. By participating in Fairtrade Fortnight we hope to spread awareness in the college community of the problems some farmers face in poorer countries and raise awareness of the range of Fairtrade products available".

Why bananas? (Quoted from Fairtrade Foundation website http://www.fairtrade.org.uk/)

Bananas symbolise the challenges in international trade. Many people who grow and harvest bananas endure unacceptable working and living conditions. But its not just banana farmers who face these challenges; its millions of farmers and workers in developing countries, on whom we rely for our food and drink and lifestyles. They are kept in poverty by unfair trade rules and poor market access.

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One in four bananas bought in the UK is Fairtrade. As part of their strategy, 'Tipping the Balance', the Fairtrade Foundation want to make half of all bananas sold in the UK Fairtrade by 2012. This world record attempt will make it absolutely clear to retailers - we all want Fairtrade bananas, for us, for producers, for the planet.