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20 May 2008 / by Rachael Stiles is getting behind the UK Social Investment Forum's first ever National Ethical Investment Week, a response to the soaring demand for green living and ethical investment opportunities.

From May 18th to the 24th, UKSIF – a non-profit ethical investment membership body – is hosting the event, which is hoped to encourage everyone from consumers to investors to consider green issues when making a range of decisions, from where to invest their money, to which fruit and vegetables they should buy at the supermarket.

There has been a 600 per cent increase in the amount that people are investing in ethical funds compared to this time last year, UKSIF has found. Sales of fair trade goods have doubled during the last two years, with more than one in two people now choosing organic produce and items which have not left a significant carbon footprint by travelling many miles.

Earlier this year, Ethical Investment Research Services revealed that ethical investment in Britain had broken the £9 billion mark for the first time, illustrating the growing demand for financial products which allow consumers to exercise their socially responsible values.

"We are in full support of National Ethical Investment Week" said James Caldwell, director at "Socially responsible investment in the UK is increasingly coming under the spotlight and many companies are having to change the way they operate. It is promising to see the financial services industry working with UKSIF to raise consumer awareness that such investment opportunities exist.

"While ethical investment is becoming increasingly popular, there are still many people who are unaware of the wide variety of ethical options that are available, such as ethical banking. We hope that National Ethical Investment Week will prompt more people to think about their social responsibility when deciding where to invest.

"As part of their investment or pension portfolios, investors might like to consider funds that invest in companies that are serious about ethical issues such as climate change."