Twin is very pleased that Michael Gidney, CEO of the Fairtrade Foundation, is a member of the government’s new Strategic Trade Advisory Group. The group will advise the government on international trade policy issues, including future trade agreements with countries like the USA, Australia and New Zealand.

The group includes 16 representatives from businesses, NGOs, academia, trade unions and think tanks. The group aims to represent different interests and regions of the UK. It will meet at least four times a year and will be chaired by Trade Policy Minister George Hollingbery.

Smallholder farmers produce 80% of the world’s food therefore it’s essential we work with them and offer fair, sustainable trading terms. Twin strongly believes that trade can deliver long-lasting positive impact in rural communities.  We want the market to deliver social, environment and economical development for framing communities.

Twin has over 30 years’ experience working with smallholder farmers and has seen how fair trading terms can strengthen communities. For example, our work with seven producer groups across four countries in the past five years has helped farmers achieve better quality coffee that’s sold at higher prices which allows for development in infrastructure and tools.

Twin’s Managing Director, Richard Anstead, said, “The Fairtrade Foundation has a long history of working with farming communities. It promotes safe working conditions and environmentally friendly agricultural practices in addition to fair trading prices. It’s important that future trade agreements take a holistic view of farmers’ welfare and needs. I’m sure Michael Gidney will make very valuable and important contribution to the advisory group.”