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    The Body Shop: A pioneer in Community Fair Trade

    The Body Shop continues to uphold changemaking beauty standards for communities, customers, and planet through its pioneering Community Fair Trade programme.
    The Body Shop: A pioneer in Community Fair Trade

    The brand launched its bespoke Fair Trade programme in 1987 at a time when no other beauty brands focused on fair and equitable pay to the communities from which they sourced ingredients.

    For over 30 years, the brand has sourced ethical, high-quality ingredients and accessories from thousands of producers, farmers, and artisans across the globe, boldly spearheading a movement to uplift communities. This is how Community Fair Trade was launched.

    Many of the communities that The Body Shop trades with are led by women. One such community is found in northern Ghana, where The Body Shop sources its renowned shea butter.

    The brand has worked alongside the Tungteiya Women’s Association since the early 1990s and has over the years, positively and progressively empowered women and girl children, and in so doing, impacted the wider community.

    The Body Shop: A pioneer in Community Fair Trade

    Through this partnership, villagers have reinvested into the community by building schools, teaching quarters, medical centres, water and sanitation facilities, and water storage tanks. Moreover, 1200 students are educated each year. Because of fair and predictable income, these women have become more independent, raising their status in their society, to the benefit of current and future generations.

    In return, The Body Shop acquires a luxuriously high-quality shea butter used in numerous of its products. The shea butter is made using an 18-step process that have been passed down from mothers to daughters and perfected through the generations.

    In line with their Community Fair Trade programme, The Body Shop sources avocados sustainably from South Africa. Avocados have a reputation for being difficult to source sustainably, linked to the risk of labour exploitation associated with Mexican avocados, which infringe heavily on human rights issues.

    The Body Shop: A pioneer in Community Fair Trade

    The Body Shop’s customers have the assurance that the brand’s supplier employs sustainable agricultural practices. They make use of a reduced water consumption method and help restore ecosystems. The farmers have also protected a 3.65-hectare area for conservation, supporting a significant stretch of the endangered Afro-montane Forest.

    Refilwe Mashego, brand manager for The Body Shop South Africa, adds: “As we celebrate World Fair Trade Day on 11 May, we also give recognition to The Body Shop’s sustainable relationships with the communities from which we source our ingredients. The Body Shop has always believed that business can be a force for good, and that means that the beauty products that we create for our customers should align with their values. We want to give comfort to our customers that whatever they are consuming doesn’t violate the rights of the next person. The Body Shop drives an ambitious sustainability agenda so that all living things can live in harmony on this planet that we all share. Our community Fair Trade programmes create change, our products create change, and our customers are changemakers.”

    Learn more about The Body Shop’s Community Fair Trade programme here: https://www.thebodyshop.co.za/about-us/community-fair-trade

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