The 5th Responsible Consumption and ESS Fair gets stronger, raising awareness on the climate emergency

The fair gains weight among the various Christmas events and activities, with nearly 75,000 visitors and sales worth over 130,000 euros, notching up similar figures to last year despite being three days shorter. The ten-day event saw over sixty entities, businesses and projects from the social and solidarity economy take part by organising more than fifty activities, offering a social return and paving the way for the Responsible Consumption Week scheduled for the second half of March.

30/12/2019 14:03 h

Ajuntament de Barcelona

The 5th edition of the Responsible Consumption and Social and Solidarity Economy Fair, organised by the Department for Social and Solidarity and Cooperative Economy Services at Barcelona City Council, was held in Plaça de Catalunya from 20 to 31 December. Held since 2015, the Responsible Consumption and ESS Fair is similar to Central European Christmas Markets, using wooden huts and placing the emphasis on responsible purchasing over the Christmas period and throughout the rest of the year. The range of goods and services on offer comes from social and solidarity entities running projects based around people and the local area, fair trade, renewable energy and waste prevention etc.

According to the Deputy Mayor for Economy, Work, Competitiveness and Tax, Jaume Collboni: “The Responsible Consumption and ESS Fair is about our goals as a city, which we also show by working for inclusive growth, with a healthy economy which is responsible towards our surroundings and the city”. Collboni also noted: “At a time when climate change is on everybody’s lips and we’re about to launch the LEZ, we also need the economic sphere to be consistent with the goal of fighting climate change we’ve set ourselves as a city. What we’re doing at the fair, the fact we’re giving visibility to this part of the economy that uses this inclusive, socially sustainable and responsible model is a good way of keeping up that fight over the festive period”.

For the Commissioner for the Social Economy, Local Development and Food Policy, Álvaro Porro: “The 5th Responsible Consumption and ESS Fair is an event which forms part of Christmas and which people look forward to”. Porro went on: “This year we’re placing special importance on awareness about the climate emergency, and as cities we’re spearheading action, particularly Barcelona. Christmas is clearly a time for consumer decisions and consumption is really at the heart of climate change”.

The fair concluded with nearly 75,000 participants and 130,000 euros in sales

Despite lasting three days less than last year, this year’s event matched last year’s figures with 75,000 people taking part (62% women and 38% men) at the 38 wooden booths, and 130,000 euros in sales around the huts and food stalls. This is the first year that the total volume of sales has been calculated, the corresponding figure of 130,000 euros demonstrating how the fair provides important support for the city’s social and solidarity economy.

Now firmly established on the Christmas calendar in the city, the fair also invited visitors to enjoy ‘Polsim d’Estels’, the cultural and sports activities organised in the centre of the square by the Barcelona Institute of Culture with support from municipal areas of Commerce, Urban Ecology and Sports.

Responsible consumption, habitable city and planet

This year’s fair conveyed the idea of how we can make a habitable city and planet through responsible consumption, with 1,000 men and 2,500 women taking part in discovery and practical activities to combat the climate emergency. People were invited to discover responsible consumption by visiting 38 wooden huts and learning about the work done by entities from the social and solidarity economy.

One activity invited people to fill in a card (a seed of change) and explain everyday ways of changing consumption habits instead of changing the climate. The suggestions gathered were displayed on Tuesday 31 at the end of the fair, setting out responsible consumption resolutions for 2020.

Like last year, the fifth edition of the fair also transferred the Responsible Consumption Space to the square, away from its usual location in the Municipal Consumer Information Office (OMIC). This municipal resource, opened in March 2018, is located at Ronda de Sant Pau, 43, baixos, and mainly works to inform people and raise awareness about responsible consumption.