Fraser wants to turn Larbert Fairtrade

Teenager Fraser Johnston is hoping to make Labert a fair trade town
Teenager Fraser Johnston is hoping to make Labert a fair trade town

A schoolboy is master­minding plans to create the area’s second Fairtrade town.

Fraser Johnston, a fifth year pupil at Larbert High School, is determined to make Larbert and Stenhousemuir a Fairtrade Town and has started a campaign to get them recognised.

The 15-year-old came up with the idea when he was deciding what to do for the volunteering element of his Duke of Edinburgh Silver Award.

Fraser, from Larbert, said: “Lots of charities can’t let you volunteer until you are 16, so I thought I could do something with Fairtrade.

“I was already involved in it though the Fairtrade steering group at school and I think it’s a great status for a town to have, so I set about trying to find out how we could secure it.”

Falkirk is a Fairtrade zone already, meaning customers can buy Fairtrade goods and local businesses and organisations have pledged to support the initiative. Fraser hopes to have Larbert and Stenhousemuir officially given the same status by next summer.

There are various criteria to meet before towns can be given Fairtrade the status and the teenager has now teamed up with classmate Megan Fraser to make sure they meet every one.

He said: “Buying Fairtrade is important. It educates the consumer about where their products come from and ensures suppliers have been paid and treated fairly.

“Scotland is going to be one of the first Fairtrade nations and it’s a scheme that many people back. There is a lot of work to be done before we get the status, but I think it’s more than worth it.”

Fraser has already given a talk to Larbert, Stenhousemuir and Torwood Community Council and is working to get his school and local businesses involved.

Yvonne Weir from the community council said: “The community council was very impressed with Fraser’s presentation and his plans to make Larbert and Stenhousemuir a Fairtrade Town is something we fully back.”