INVERCLYDE is set to celebrate a decade of supporting the campaign to empower farmers and workers in the developing world.

The district has been a recognised Fairtrade area since 2013 and has just retained its status up to 2023.

The award acknowledges work and commitment locally to the cause, including by the Inverclyde Fairtrade Steering Group led by retired school teacher Morag Paul.

Fairtrade aims to secure better prices, decent working conditions, local sustainability, and fair terms of trade for farmers and workers in the developing world.

Provost Martin Brennan said: “It’s an honour for Inverclyde to be a Fairtrade zone and to be recognised for the work being done to support farmers and workers in developing countries in getting a fair price for their goods and services.

"We were the first local authority to achieve Fairtrade Status and it has been renewed again, which shows they are pleased with the work that is going on in Inverclyde."

Provost Brennan says the campaign helps people who are impoverished get access to education and decent wages and in turn becoming more prosperous and taking part in international trade.

He said: "On a moral level it is good and on a practical level as well.

“A tremendous amount of excellent work is done in our schools and right across the community to promote Fairtrade messages and goods, which the council is proud to support.

“In particular, I’d like to congratulate Morag from the steering group for all her efforts.”

Among the things highlighted by in the renewal confirmation was the successful ‘pop-up’ shop at the Watt Institution last year run by the steering group and backed by the council.

Inverclyde’s support for the annual ‘Fairtrade Fortnight’ and work in local schools was also praised.

Morag said: “I’m particularly proud of the work that has been done in schools and nurseries by teachers and parent groups to promote Fairtrade in their classrooms, homes and communities.

“Children and young people become very engaged with the concept of fairness, and understand the need to promote equality, equity and sustainability in their lives and beyond.

“Our schools do a brilliant job in inspiring their pupils with these issues.

"I feel proud that Inverclyde has again received a renewal of our Fairtrade status.

“A special mention goes to our volunteers and those who have consistently sought out and bought products from producers in developing countries.

Inverclyde was the first local authority in Scotland to sign up to the International Fairtrade Charter and it is also a member of the Scottish Fairtrade Forum.

The renewal of its Fairtrade status will support work being done by the council examining the area's historical links to the transatlantic slave trade.