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Fair Trade

Fair Trade means an equitable and fair partnership between marketers in North America and producers in Asia, Africa, Latin America, and other parts of the world. A fair trade partnership works to provide low-income artisans and farmers with a living wage for their work.

Fair Trade Federation (FTF) criteria are:

* Paying a fair wage in the local context.
* Offering employees opportunities for advancement.
* Providing equal employment opportunities for all people, particularly the most disadvantaged.
* Engaging in environmentally sustainable practices.
* Being open to public accountability.
* Building long-term trade relationships.
* Providing healthy and safe working conditions within the local context.
· Providing financial and technical assistance to producers whenever possible


· Of $3.6 trillion of all goods exchanged globally, fair trade accounts for only .01%.

source: http://www.fairtradefederation.org/

Using fair trade shea butter means that these women are fairly compensated for their knowledge and expertise of traditional methods of producing shea butter.

We at Prairieland Herbs are honored to purchase our shea butter and virgin coconut oil from Agbanga Karite, a small African-owned producer and supplier of high quality, natural handcrafted tropical oils. They are a Fair Trade organization, which means they operate under the principles listed above.

Not only does Agbanga Karite produce amazing ,an high-quality product, but they do so ethically, and in an environmentally sustainable manner, using the resources at their disposal.

* They allocate 30% of their income to community empowerment programs that are aimed at building the human resources necessary for sustainable development.

*They do not discriminate in their hiring practices, and have made a special effort to promote employment of underrepresented ethnic groups and women. (80% of their employees are women).

* Agbanga Karite members are paid 30% above the Togolese national standards and are provided benefits, including pension plans, vacation, on-site child care, and others.

* Agbanga Karite members undergo extensive training in all aspects of the business, including production, marketing and management. The purpose of this training is to enable them to begin their own businesses in the future. A percentage of revenues are dedicated to educational scholarships for local students to study within Togo and abroad.

* They have designed our production facilities and harvesting practices to minimize our impact on the natural environment, and are working to switch to renewable energy sources for all their energy needs. These include solar powered grinders, presses, and office equipment. They have already converted a diesel powered trucks to run on unmarketable shea butter!!

And much more. We encourage you to visit their beautiful and informative site to learn more about their product, production methods, and advantages of supporting a Fair Trade company. The shea butter slide show is especially interesting!

We at Prairieland Herbs plan to continue to support fair trade organizations and businesses. We will continue to expand our offering of Fair Trade products in the future. We very much enjoy doing business with and supporting ethical, environmentally friendly and socially responsible companies such as Agbanga Karite!

 

For more information: http://www.ifat.org/

Purchase other Fair Trade Goods at:

http://thanksgivingcoffee.com/ - coffee and teas

http://equalexchange.com/ - coffee, cocoa, chocolate

http://www.tenthousandvillages.org/ - gifts, artwork, textiles and more

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