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Press release

  • 23 November 2007

University of Sussex is awarded Fairtrade status

Making its mark: Fairtrade at Sussex

Making its mark: Fairtrade at Sussex

The University of Sussex has been awarded Fairtrade status thanks to the joint efforts of staff and students.

The award is the result of a pioneering collaboration involving University of Sussex staff and the University of Sussex Students' Union (USSU) to promote ethical values throughout the University campus. The University now stocks 100-plus Fairtrade products.

David Chick, General Manager in Catering for Sussex, was part of the steering group set up to win Fairtrade status. He says: "I'm delighted we have been granted the title as it's the first joint initiative I'm aware of between the Students' Union and the University to promote the ethical values of all environmentally-minded students and staff in such a high-profile way."

To become a Fairtrade University, Sussex had to submit an application to the Fairtrade Foundation, demonstrating it had met the following five requirements:

  • The Students' Union and the University authorities both create a Fairtrade policy;
  • Fairtrade foods made available for sale in all campus shops and used in all cafés/restaurants/bars on campus;
  • Fairtrade foods (for example, coffee and tea) are served at all meetings hosted by the University and the Union, and are served in all University and Union management offices;
  • There is a commitment to campaign for increased Fairtrade consumption on campus;
  • A Fairtrade Steering Group is set up.

Paul Knight, Trading Development Manager at Sussex, was also involved with the steering group. He said: "We have been working very hard with the Students' Union to widen our range of Fairtrade products on sale across campus. By achieving Fairtrade status as a University we are very proud that our efforts and commitment to this worthy cause have been recognised by the Fairtrade Foundation."

John Houlihan, Commercial Services Manager at USSU, and the Students' Union representative on the steering group, added: "We've known from customer surveys this is something customers have wanted. Now Sussex can demonstrate its ongoing commitment to supporting positive change for disadvantaged communities."

The designation of Fairtrade status will be celebrated at a Christmas fair on campus on Thursday 29 November, where Fairtrade items will be on sale. The event will take place n Mandela Hall, Falmer House, from 11am until 3pm.

Notes for editors


  • For further details of the work of the Fairtrade Foundation, see Fairtrade
  • For more information on the University's Fairtrade policy, see policy

University of Sussex Press office contacts: Maggie Clune or Jacqui Bealing. Tel 01273 678 888 or email

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