The Co-op has unveiled the move of all of its branded and own-label South African wine to Fairtrade.
The move means the retailer now stocks 57 Fairtrade wines, 45 of which are from South Africa.
The symbol group retailer has also invested £800,000 through donations and social premium into a start-up winery called Fairroots in a bit to cement its commitment to the South African wine industry.
The winery spans more than 34 hectares, has eight permanent workers plus additional seasonal producers. The symbol group retailer plans to eventually sell its wine in its stores.
“At the Co-op, we have been involved in the sale of Fairtrade wine right from the beginning and for us the last 17 years or so has been a journey towards forging closer relationships with our suppliers,” Co-op Fairtrade wine buyer Edward Robinson said.
“Providing better quality and value for our customers and – most importantly of all – doing everything we can to support the most important people in the chain: the vineyard workers and their families.”
Robinson added: ”With this in mind, we are incredibly proud to be announcing that all our South African wines will now be made according to Fairtrade standards.
“The work does not end here, however. This year we are putting in place ambitious new projects in housing and education and will be working closely with one of our Fairtrade Trusts, who now own their own vineyard.
“With the extensive social benefits which Fairtrade brings, together with the excellence of the wines involved, surely now is the time to ask why anyone would not want to choose Fairtrade wine when buying from South Africa.”