Clonakilty Fairtrade's 15th Anniversary Gala Dinner

A Fair & Local Feast - Clonakilty Fairtrade's 15th Anniversary Gala Dinner
Clonakilty Fairtrade celebrate 15 years as Ireland’s first Fairtrade Town.
When & Where: Sunday 16th September, 7pm, Fernhill House Hotel, Clonakilty, West Cork

The pioneering town of Clonakilty has long been known for its inclusive and community minded ethos, creative spirit and a belief that an alternative way of doing things has a positive benefit for people, communities and the environment.
Clonakilty’s award of Ireland’s first Fairtrade town in 2003 recognised that this outlook stretches far beyond the picturesque streets of the West Cork seaside town to like –minded communities across the world.
Jennifer Sleeman, who will celebrate her 89th birthday this year and will be a guest of honour at the Gala Dinner, was the visionary who encouraged Clonakilty to be recognised as a Fairtrade town. A life-long activist and campaigner, Jennifer understood that the conversation about food and ethics is mutually dependent, a way of thinking that is now an integral part of the established ethos in Clonakilty.
1 Clonakilty - Ireland's First Fairtrade TownAllison Roberts, treasurer of the Clonakilty Fairtrade Committee says, “I am passionate about as sourcing my own food as local as possible, but some things can’t be sourced in Ireland, or even in Europe and that is where Fairtrade starts to comes in. Fairtrade is essential for certain parts of the world where small farmers do not have a means to sell their produce ethically without the support of 2 Jennifer Sleemana larger co-operation.”
“To celebrate 15 years of Fairtrade we want the Fairtrade movement in Clonakilty to link up more firmly with all other local and ethically minded food producers and movements here in West Cork,” says Roberts. “The benefit of all of these types of businesses and groups have to our town areimmeasurable.  It is essential that such groups work and celebrate together to keep up spirit and momentum.”
To celebrate the 15th anniversary of Fairtrade in Clonakilty, the group will be hosting a Fair & Local Gala Dinner in the beautiful surroundings on Fernhill House Hotel, Clonakilty, West Cork on Sunday 16th September.
3 Allison Roberts, Exploding Tree / Clonakilty ChocolateA specially created menu by celebrated local chef Caitlin Ruth, also a supporter of West Cork’s wonderful larder of local sustainable produce, will be served up to diners on the night. On supporting the event, Caitlin said, “Using food produced locally is key to what we do in Deasy’s Restaurant. September is a great time of year for all kinds of growers, we have gluts of perfect vegetables everywhere and makes choosing food that is so abundant and local the obvious thing to do. When food is this fresh, so perfect and accessible it makes cooking exciting.”
4 Caitlin Ruth, Head Chef of Deasy's RestaurantAllison Roberts, also the founder of Exploding Tree / Clonakilty Chocolate, Ireland’s only Fairtrade bean-to-bar chocolate maker said of the event, “We look forward to celebrating with some amazing local food producers along with those of us who source our ingredients ethically from further afield. It will be an evening to remember.”
Special guest speakers, announced closer to the event, will set the context as to why supporting sustainable food production is important for future food security: whether that’s supporting local, or global, under Fairtrade. 
Diners will be treated on the night to a cocktail reception with live music, Caitlin’s specially designed five-course menu and a glass of wine, all for just €50.  Tickets available to purchase online at
5 Clonakilty Fairtrade Committee
This event is part of A Taste of West Cork Food Festival taking place over ten days from 7th – 16th September 2018.
press release

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