Monday, October 13 - Hotels and restuarants polled on 'ethical' goods

PUBLISHED: 15:13 13 October 2008 | UPDATED: 09:47 10 June 2010

A POLL of Exmouth s hotels, restaurants and cafés to discover who uses ethical food and drink is being carried out throughout the town.

A POLL of Exmouth's hotels, restaurants and cafés to discover who uses 'ethical' food and drink is being carried out throughout the town.

The poll, sent to businesses by the Chamber of Commerce, is a prelude to a bid to turn Exmouth into East Devon's first and only Fair Trade Town.

Fair Trade ensures disadvantaged farmers and workers in developing countries get a better deal.

And in March this year the town council backed the move following an impassioned plea from a Ugandan tea producer.

Martin Odoch, from the Koboko district, at the invitation of Martin John-Nicholls of Christian Aid, espoused the benefits of the Fair Trade Mark in a presentation.

However to gain this status it requires the support of businesses, local authorities, churches and community groups.

Simon Wood, secretary of the Chamber of Trade said it was important to know the details of who stocks Fair Trade products - to ensure the directory being published in the spring of 2009 is accurate.

Mr Wood said: "This survey is being conducted by the group who are pressing for 'Fair Trade Town' status for Exmouth with the support of the Town Council.

"One of the five criteria for the award is that a good number of firms use products which carry the mark in their provision of refreshments.

"In a tourist town this means our hotel and boarding house businesses. Several hotels and bed and breakfasts already offer Fair Trade products as an option in bedrooms and use them in the preparation of meals.

"There is now a very wide range of Fairtrade coffees, teas, sugars, biscuits and juices."

Martin John-Nicholls said: "Exmouth would be amongst the pioneers (of Fair Trade) and can help show the rest of the country that it doesn't have to be exception - it can be the norm.

"It would heighten people's awareness and encourage corporations like Nestlé to pay fairer prices."

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