Traidcraft - December 2017

Traidcraft has a long history of working in the Indian cotton sector. Back in the early 2000s, Traidcraft worked to pioneer the first Fairtrade cotton from smallholder farmers in Gujarat. They also worked with cotton farm labourers in Karnataka helping them to organize and develop a collective voice to improve their working conditions.

In the extremely poor districts of Kalahandi and Rayagada in south west Odisha, cotton is the main cash crop. Traidcraft is supporting farmers to take up organic farming practices. The farmers are taught to plant nutritious intercrops between the rows of cotton to boost soil fertility and attract the right kind of insects to feed off the pests that would otherwise attack their cotton. These intercrops have been selected to also boost the diet of the farmers, so the benefit is threefold. The farmers are trained to produce their own organic composts, fertilisers and bio-pesticides from locally available resources. These farmers now have a sense of pride that comes from independence and self-sufficiency.

Over half of the farmers are women and the project is pioneering simple technologies to reduce the work burden on these women. These technologies include water carriers on wheels, lighter weight sprayers , rotary weeders and hand -wound winnowers.

As a result of these agricultural techniques, farmers are seeing their costs going down and their productivity and the price received for their cotton going up. People’s incomes are increasing but also their skills are increasing, their confidence is growing and the family nutrition and education is improving.
This is so inspiring!!

Thank you for all your support .
Our Traidcraft stall will be on Sunday December 10th in the Porch Room after the 10am service. Final chance to buy your Christmas goodies!!
Please contact me if you want to know more.

Jackie Natt 01453 731018.