Annie Howie is the Director of Bala Sports
1. When did you first find out about Fair Trade?
I have had an interest for agriculture and economics since I was at school and fell in love with Africa during a trip as a student. I saw the hard work that farmers put in to produce coffee, tea and sugar cane and the little and volatile sums that they got paid for their efforts. Fairtrade helps them plan ahead and receive a fair price in a market that is increasingly dominated by multinational companies controlling the whole of the supply chain.d to me.
2. Why do you think Fair Trade is important?
Fairtrade enables the men and women producing goods at the start of the supply chain to achieve a fair price for their goods. Many form local producer co-operatives which strengthens communities and helps to strengthen relationships with buyers. With a more stable income, farmers are able to plan and rotate crop production and families can budget for health and educational needs, lifting them from poverty.
3. What are you doing for Fairtrade Fortnight?
Working for Bala Sport, Fairtrade fortnight will be a busy time as our co-operative and brand has grown and numerous events featuring Fairtrade footballs are taking place up and down the country. Increasing awareness of Fairtrade sports balls and the benefits that buying a Fairtrade ball can bring to the men and women that stitch the balls will hopefully encourage more people to switch to Bala Sport balls, changing the lives of the families in Pakistan for the good.