Food Matters: Going bananas – for Fairtrade

As part of Fairtrade Fortnight, FERN (Fairtrade East Riding Network) and Beverley Fairtrade Town is inviting people to Toll Gavel Methodist Church on Tuesday, February 23 at 7.30pm to meet Nioka Abbott-Balcombe, a banana farmer from the Windward Islands.

Doors open at 7pm and there will be Fairtrade refreshments (including Fairtrade cakes, bananas and chocolate), a raffle for a Fairtrade hamper, and stalls selling Fairtrade products from 3W, Black Yak, Koteka, Traidcraft, Oxfam and East Riding Youth Assembly.

The event is free, but donations will be welcome to cover costs. Nioka is on a tour of the country during Fairtrade Fortnight talking about the benefits of Fairtrade for banana farmers and the issues affecting them. Bananas are the nation's favourite fruit and most of the Fairtrade bananas we buy locally come from the Windward Islands.

Festival time again in city

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Following last year's success, Leeds Loves Food festival is due to return this summer.

Thousands of people descended on the city to see the likes of Jimmy Doherty and James Martin demonstrating the best in culinary techniques.

Plans for this year's programme are being finalised, but will include cookery demonstrations and masterclasses, food sampling, celebrity chefs and special offers and promotions.

Deborah Green, chief executive of Marketing Leeds said: "Last year's Leeds Loves Food festival was the first we have organised and was a great success, resulting in an eight-fold return on investment, with press coverage in Spain and Italy.

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"The festival is an opportunity to celebrate and showcase our fabulous restaurants and culinary expertise to a national and international audience, and this year's will be no exception."

For more information on the event which will take place from July 1 to 4, visit

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