For many years Southampton has had a special link with Uganda. The Church of England here is linked to the area of Uganda called Busoga and many parishes are in "partnership" with parishes there and have been for many years. Visits take place in both directions while a number of Southampton parishes have helped to pay for clean water sources or health clinics to be established in their link area. So it was a natural extension of this to support Ugandan farmers in their efforts to make a better living through fair trade. When SCM Foods first started we concentrated on products from Uganda. We have now expanded to stock products sourced from elsewhere. However, dried pineapple is still one of our best selling lines.
Most people in Busoga grow their own food but make little or nothing extra to pay for basic health care or their children's education. Fair trade helps to supply subsistence farmers with a more reliable source of income.
Recently a fund has been set up called SPRING. (Southampton Partnership resourcing Income Generation). This is to provide start up grants to help get groups going with income generating projects such as drying pineapple and banana. We have now a number of groups established in the Busoga area who dry pineapple, banana and other fruits, both for the local market and for export through “Fruits of the Nile” a company based in Busoga who supply Tropical Wholefoods with their dried fruit and which we sell here. The local market is increasing with small snack packs for school children, supplying one of their all important “5 a day”.
We also buy baskets sourced directly from a women’s group in Busoga. You can find these on our website: www.scmcrafts.co.uk. We pay the women above local prices for the baskets and reimburse all shipping costs as soon as possible. Filled with a selection of our fair trade products, they make fabulous presents any time of year!
|Last Updated ( Monday, 09 February 2009 )|