Fairtrade status celebrated by HWUSA

Fairtrade products are available in Heriot-Watt University cafes, restaurants and shops, bringing benefits to producers in developing countries.

Heriot-Watt was one of three universities invited to a Downing Street tea party with Sarah Brown to celebrate the number of Fairtrade universities and colleges passing the 100 mark.

Heriot-Watt Students' Association President Simon Eltringham joined representitives from Aberystwyth University in Wales and Myerscough College, Lancashire, to share the honour of passing the 100-mark. Representatives from the three institutions have been invited to a tea party at 10 Downing Street, hosted by Sarah Brown and held to celebrate the 15th anniversary of the arrival of the first three FAIRTRADE-certified products in UK shops.

Simon Eltringham, President of Heriot-Watt Students' Association, said: "We are absolutely thrilled that the hard work in making Heriot-Watt a Fairtrade university has also brought us the honour of being the 100th Fairtrade University in the UK. In becoming a Fairtrade University Heriot-Watt is playing a key role in helping Scotland to achieve its criteria to become one of the world's first Fairtrade Nations. This success is a tribute to colleagues at the Students' Association and around the university and demonstrates an absolute commitment to environmental and ethical issues."

The Fairtrade Universities and Colleges scheme started in 2003. In order to become a Fairtrade university or college, students and staff must make a commitment to supporting Fairtrade. This includes ensuring that Fairtrade products are available in on-site cafes, restaurants and shops wherever possible, and raising awareness of Fairtrade and the benefits it brings to producers in developing countries.

Harriet Lamb, Executive Director of the Fairtrade Foundation says: "I am delighted to welcome Heriot-Watt, Aberystwyth and Myerscough to the growing number of universities and colleges which are spreading the Fairtrade message. Thousands of young people pass through the doors of universities and colleges every year and many already care passionately about Fairtrade. Fairtrade status gives them a chance to demonstrate the value of Fairtrade to other students and helps university and college staff make a real difference to people in developing countries around the world."