Devon Libraries go bananas for Fairtrade fortnight.

PUBLISHED: 11:34 17 February 2009 | UPDATED: 08:31 18 June 2010

LARGE quantities of bananas are being delivered to Devon County Council libraries next week, in the hope they will consumed in an attempt to set a world record.

LARGE quantities of bananas are being delivered to Devon County Council libraries next week, in the hope they will consumed in an attempt to set a world record.

The stunt is part of celebrations for Fairtrade Fortnight which runs from Monday 23rd February to Friday 8th March 2009.

The aim is to get a million people eating a Fairtrade banana between the hours of 12.00 noon on Friday March 6th and Saturday March 7th.

At the events planned around libraries, members of the public will have the chance to sample a range of Fairtrade produce - tea, coffee and chocolate, in particular. There will also be displays of Fairtrade posters, as well as leaflets and stickers to take away.

Devon gained Fairtrade status last autumn, and a number of towns around the county have been designated Fairtrade towns. Devon County Council itself has a commitment to using Fairtrade products.

Two of the county's libraries are playing host to Riziq Abu Nasser, a Fairtrade Olive Oil producer from Palestine.

The events planned (in alphabetical order) are:

Venue Date/time Event

Barnstaple Library Friday March 6th Banana Eating World Record Attempt - bananas donated by the Co-op

Plus displays of information throughout Fairtrade Fortnight.

Toddlers Bounce and Rhyme - with a banana theme.

Bideford Library Friday March 6th - Saturday March 7th Banana Eating World Record Attempt -

From Noon Friday to Noon Saturday. Philip Jones - Bideford Fairtrade Group will hold a display during those days promoting Fairtrade food.

Clyst Vale Library During Fairtrade Fortnight A display of information and books about Fairtrade

Crediton library Saturday March 7th "Tasting Saturdays" - displays and a chance to sample Fairtrade produce. Free Fairtrade tea and Coffee

Crediton Library Saturday 28th February "Tasting Saturdays" - displays and a chance to sample Fairtrade produce.

Riziq Abu Nasser will visit the library and there will be opportunities to taste Fairtrade dates, olive oil and almonds

Dawlish Library During Fairtrade Fortnight Display organised by local Fairtrade group through out the fortnight.

Exeter Central Library Monday 23rd Talk and Olive Oil Tasting by Riziq Abu Nasser at 10.00 - 11.30 am Fairtrade tea and coffee refreshments available before and after. Limited places available.

Exeter Central Library and Exeter Performing Arts Library Friday March 6th Banana Eating World Record Attempt - Fairtrade bananas have been donated by Marks and Spencer. Come and get your free banana between 12.00 - 2.00

Exmouth Library From Friday February 27th - Saturday March 7th A banana recipe competition for both children and adults. The winning recipes will be compiled into a recipe book and a display of Fairtrade goods, books and leaflets running throughout the fortnight.

A children's banana trail in the library will take place throughout the fortnight. Prizes donated by the Co-Op and other Fairtrade sponsors.

Holsworthy Library Friday March 6th Banana Eating World Record Attempt - Fairtrade bananas have been donated by Holsworthy Co-op Come and get your free banana between 12.00 - 2.00

Holsworthy Library Friday February 27th Fairtrade display, advice from 10.00 am - 12.00 am and Coffee Morning.

Ivybridge Library During Fairtrade Fortnight A Fairtrade display in conjunction with the local Fairtrade group. Olive Oil producer, Riziq Abu Nasser will be visiting the library for an informal tour

Ottery St Mary Library Friday March 6th Taking part in the Banana Eating world Record Attempt plus range of Fairtrade Goods to be tasted and for sale.

Okehampton Library Saturday March 7th Tea/coffee morning in conjunction with World Book Day. Raffle with Fairtrade hamper, kindly donated by Waitrose to be won.

Pinhoe Library Friday March 6th Taking part in the banana eating World Record Attempt. Fairtrade bananas donated by local Co-Op.

Tiverton Library Monday March 2nd - Monday March 16th Fairtrade display in the foyer- information, posters, leaflets etc.

Fairtrade Fortnight has been an opportunity for libraries to work with local and national businesses that are committed to Fairtrade products and principles. These events have been supported by Marks and Spencer, the Co-Operative, Waitrose, Tesco, Devon Development Education, local Fairtrade groups and the Devon Fairtrade Steering Group, amongst others.

Cllr Chris Bray from Devon County Council, who led the campaign to gain Fairtrade status and has been sitting on the County's Fairtrade Steering Group, said: "We are delighted to have two Fairtrade producers coming to Devon to spread the message about how important it is to farmers in their countries that we in the developed world buy, as much as possible, fairly traded goods.

"Last year was a great one for Fairtrade in Devon, with an outstanding visit during Fairtrade fortnight from a Ugandan tea producer, Martin Odoch, followed, in the Autumn, by the County receiving Fairtrade status. Achieving this, after a great deal of hard work and co-operation, shows to everyone that Devon is a caring county."

The Fairtrade mark is the only independent consumer label that ensures farmers in developing countries receive an agreed and stable price for the crops they grow that covers the cost of sustainable production, as well as additional income for farmers and workers to invest in the future. Retail sales of Fairtrade certified products topped £290 million in 2006 and have grown 40% year-on-year over the past five years.


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