phd research week 39

Evernote Camera Roll 20131006 180200 copy

I attended the Fairtrade Foundation annual conference in London, a whole day packed with talks and workshops, and over 200 attendees from different regions of the UK, universities, schools and companies.   This event was free to join, and it left me thinking that  still the majority of people involved in understanding fairtrade commerce are not of a young generation, so the challenge to address the younger consumer towards more sustainable ways to purchase remains a challenge. One of the workshops focused on presenting the new campaign for 2014, regarding the banana price wars and the impact it has on banana producers all around the world.  The workshop ran by Karma Comms, presented a series of creative strategies that are currently being developed by the creative teams.  It was explained that the position of this strategies is coming from a positive stance (with example given of Obama’s electorate campaign branding) in other words, “we want more of this and less of that”. Although the different ideas presented by Karma Comms for this new campaign were interesting, i was more interested in observing the audience’s reactions to what was being presented and critiqued.  The audience comprised of an eclectic group of people, the majority being 50+ years old, not creatives, but campaigners for fairtrade at different parts of the country.  Some of the questions raised were;  How can UK people identify with banana production if there are no bananas produced here?  How do the colours used in this campaign reflect the fairtrade icon green/blue recognition? This campaign focuses on several participatory methods, such as creating a collective image with submissions by the public through social media.  There is clear evidence that participation and collaborating towards greater good are a tool currently being explored in initiatives such as Fairtrade.