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The city was created on January 1, 1998, through the amalgamation of the former City of Trenton with the Townships of Murray and Sidney. The name "Quinte West" was chosen as a compromise between those in favour of retaining Trenton as part of the new municipality's name and those who wanted to completely dissociate from Hastings County. In December 2011, Quinte West became Canada's first Fair Trade town by adopting its own Fair Trade By-law. As a result, all municipal operations will be required to purchase only fair trade certified goods and services whenever possible (i.e., coffee). In addition all staff are being trained in fair trade awareness so that they can make more informed decisions when purchasing items for their departments or personal use at home.