HUNDREDS of Warrington residents have signed a petition calling for the government to put poverty reduction first in new trade deals.

Fairtrade Foundation's petition has attracted almost 400 people in the town and aims deliver living incomes for everyone in developing countries, especially women.

The Deputy Mayor of Warrington, Cllr Wendy Johnson and her consort, stopped by to support fairtrade at their event in Golden Square shopping centre.

It was promoting a living wage for worldwide growers of cacao, sugar, bananas and other fairtrade products.

This year’s theme was 'She Deserves' and focused on the crucial role of women in developing countries, in transforming their communities for the better.

Jackie Hancock, a member of the organising fairtrade group, said: "We had some great conversations with shoppers, who were keen to sign the petition when they learnt more about the difficult lives of cocoa farmers in west Africa whose average earnings are 74p a day when they actually need a living income of £1.86 a day to provide for their families with dignity."