Farmer on a quad bike with sheep copyright Charlie Hedley

Fairtrade and the Lake District

World's first Fairtrade National Park Zone – what does it mean?

Fairtrade logo

We believe that a sustainable future for food and farming depends on buying local produce whenever we can, and choosing Fairtrade for non-local products.

That’s why we've committed to support both local farmers and Fairtrade producers in developing countries.

In partnership with Cumbria Fairtrade Network, we were successful in establishing the Lake District as officially the world's first Fairtrade National Park Zone!

We are:

  • encouraging more people to buy local and Fairtrade produce
  • getting more Fairtrade products into more retail and catering outlets
  • asking local workplaces and community groups to support Fairtrade
  • raising awareness of Fairtrade through events and press coverage

What's the advantage of the Lake District becoming a Fairtrade Zone?

  • It recognises the level of support for Fairtrade in the Lake District already - seven Fairtrade communities, 171 workplaces, three schools and 25 places of worship.

    140 other community organisations support Fairtrade, including shops and catering outlets. Much of this support is thanks to small Fairtrade community groups around the Park who have promoted Fairtrade for years already.
  • We can use the global reputation of the Lake District to promote Fairtrade, as part of our sustainability agenda and linked to the 'Local and Fair' initiative. And we can use our influence to bolster local groups' efforts to increase awareness and uptake of Fairtrade locally.
  • More farmers in developing countries will ultimately benefit if more of their Fairtrade products are consumed, just as more of our own farmers will benefit if more Cumbrian produce is consumed.

Local and Fair logo

Why are we doing this?

Fair price – Certain future

We and our partners are committed to sustainable development. By supporting Fairtrade, we are also supporting sustainable development globally.

Buying local reduces food miles which minimises the impact on the environment and supports the local economy.

Buying local products from the National Park and Cumbria is of key importance to ensure our local economy and local producers benefit over the long term.

We see supporting Fairtrade and local produce as complementary commitments.

Fairtrade products are generally from tropical countries. Buying Fairtrade does not conflict with buying local products. You can see a full list of products on The Fairtrade Foundation


Cumbria is already a Fairtrade county. There are many Fairtrade communities, schools, churches in the Lake District. Also many Lake District businesses, particularly in tourism which use Fairtrade as well as local products.

Matching values

Promoting Local and Fairtrade fits with our organisational values of:

  • We are ethical and care about the environment
  • We value people

The Fairtrade mandate ensures fairness through its ethical standards. Fairtrade:

  • pays small-scale farmers in developing countries fair and stable prices for their products, so that their businesses are sustainable
  • benefits whole communities by paying a 'social premium' on top of the fair price, to invest in schools, clinics and water supplies
  • encourages long-term trading relationships, so producers can plan their future
  • gives access to producer groups to pre-finance so they don’t have to take out expensive loans
  • reduces the number of middlemen, and puts more money into farmers’ pockets
  • enables farmers to practise sustainable farming which helps protect the environment
  • ensures products which are of high quality, and often organic too
  • strengthens growers' communities by promoting democratic processes in deciding how to spend the Fairtrade premium
  • connects producers with consumers in a system which is transparent and ethical
  • transforms lives.

How to get involved

If you are part of the Lake District community and would like to support our campaign, you can complete a pledge online (opens in new window).

For more details, please email or call 01539 724555.