Lovers of the grape discovered far-reaching health benefits as a result of drinking the odd glass of vino, when local independent co-op society, Chelmsford Star held a Fairtrade Wine-tasting Evening on 2nd March. It was revealed that, amongst other benefits, drinking Fairtrade wine in the UK allowed struggling communities overseas to build hospitals and schools, and better support themselves.
The ticketed event held at the Quadrant department store, and attended by the Mayor of Chelmsford, Councillor Patricia Hughes and a number of dignitaries from the Chelmsford City Fairtrade Campaign, presented testimonials from farmers in Argentina, South Africa and Guatemala showing the positive effects switching your chosen brand of bottle can have - with purchases of Fairtrade options allowing the villages it was grown in to build education facilities, buy ambulances, employ doctors or even cover farmers with health insurance.
Owner of the Essex Wine School, Neil Bull, took the audience - made up of a wide range of ages and backgrounds - through sampling six varying wine varieties, and well and truly busted the myth that fairtrade brands were somehow inferior to their counterparts.
"Wow, the co-op sparkling muscado rosé was simply gorgeous," said one attendee. "It’s my new favourite, and I can't wait to share a few bottles with my girlfriends this weekend. Even better, I can feel chuffed that I'm doing my bit just by buying it!"
"These wines have won numerous awards, often beating non-Fairtrade alternatives," said Chelmsford Star's Head of Marketing & Membership Kevin Bennett. "They don't cost any extra in our stores either, so there really is no reason why people can't benefit a struggling community every time they purchase a bottle of wine, or any of the dozens of different types of Fairtrade product we stock. Choose Fairtrade!"
The event was held at Chelmsford Quadrant, currently celebrating its 150th birthday, and took part within Fairtrade Fortnight (27th Feb – 12th March), during which organisations all over the world are highlighting the benefits of Fairtrade."
Owner of Essex Wine School Neil Bull, serves up a Fairtrade storm with the Mayor of Chelmsford, Patricia Hughes, accompanied by Lance Gardner (Chelmsford Star Membership Committee), Mayor’s escort Mr. Graham Moulds, and Malcolm Wallace (Chelmsford City Fairtrade Campaign).