Life

How delicious Valentine's Day gifts can help to support disadvantaged communities

AS WELL as Valentine's Day fast approaching (it's on Friday, guys), Fairtrade Fortnight (February 24-March 8) is just around the corner too. The awareness-raising fortnight is part of a worldwide campaign to change consumerism by ensuring farmers in poorer regions are properly paid for their work and produce.

From salted caramel thins to Medjoul Dates from Palestine, Oxfam has a wide selection of Fairtrade treats that not only taste delicious, but also help bring decent living standards to some of the most disadvantaged areas of the world. Here's a taste of what's on offer:

DIVINE CHOCOLATE THINS

Divine is a Fairtrade chocolate company that's 44 per cent owned by cocoa farmers. All of its cocoa is grown in Ghana by Kuapa Kokoo, a co-operative of cocoa farmers who receive a share of the profits, as well as a fair deal for their cocoa. Kuapa farmers invest their share of the wealth into improving their farms and communities. Divine's Chocolate Mint Thins and Salted Caramel Thins are delicious after-dinner treats – if you can wait until after dinner. (Both £3.99)

ZAYTOUN OLIVE OIL

Zaytoun Olive Oil, giving a fair price to Palestinian farmers

Founded in 2004, Zaytoun is an award-winning social enterprise. 100 per cent of Zaytoun's profits are reinvested into furthering their mission of supporting Palestinian farmers through fair trade. Zaytoun sources its olive oil from the Palestine Fair Trade Association (PFTA) which ensures farmers and cooperatives are paid a fair price, enabling them to fund community projects and invest in farming tools. Pressed from freshly picked olives, Zaytoun's Extra Virgin Olive Oil has an award-winning, warm peppery flavour. It is sourced from family-owned groves nestled on sun-drenched Palestinian hills. (£12.99)

ZAYTOUN MEDJOUL DATES

These tasty Medjoul dates are rich in vitamins and minerals, as well as being a great source of fibre, iron and potassium. Perfect as a healthy snack, or added to cakes or savoury dishes. (£4.29)

CAFÉDIRECT MEDIUM ROAST INSTANT COFFEE

Cafédirect's Instant Medium Roast Coffee was the first coffee to carry the Fairtrade label in the UK. Its smooth, full-flavoured taste comes from a careful blend of Central and South American Arabica coffee beans. As the UK's first and largest Fairtrade drinks brand, Cafédirect not only pays the Fairtrade social premium for its crops but also reinvests at least 50 per cent of profits back into the co-operatives and farming communities it works with. 89 per cent of Cafédirect’s co-operatives own shares in the company, making them direct beneficiaries of the success of the business. (£3.99)

CAFÉDIRECT MACHU PICCHU COFFEE BEANS

Grown in the fertile Machu Picchu region, these Arabica coffee beans are rich and smooth, with dark chocolate overtones. The unique micro-climate results in a coffee with light acidity and a full body. (£3.99)

:: Products can be purchased from selected Oxfam stores and online at oxfam.org.uk/shop/sourced-by-oxfam

Enjoy reading the Irish News?

Subscribe now to get full access

Life