Monday, 16 November 2009

Fairtrade ingredients - coming to a beauty product near you

Between various events I've been to and articles I've researched recently, I've come across an encouraging number of initiatives bringing ethical ingredients to beauty products.
One of the most exciting of these is organic certified Somali incense, being used in the gorgeous-smelling frankincense range from Neal's Yard Remedies. The frankincense is a tree resin gathered by the women from semi-nomadic pastoral tribes, whose families mainly depend on their livestock - cows, goats and camels - to make a living. Despite the long-running unrest in Somalia, wholesalers have managed to get accreditation for frankincense gathered by women from the Samburu people. More information from here and here.
The second project that caught my notice was from Tropical Wholefoods which, as its name suggests, usually sells dried fruit and nuts. But as a by-product of this, it has started sourcing from its dried apricot growers in the Gilgit area of Northern Pakistan other parts of the apricot, with Fairtrade certified crushed apricot stone hulls going to Boots for Fairtrade body scrubs, and apricot kernel oil again heading for Neals Yard's lovely products. And, of course, most of this comes from parts of the fruit that would normally go to waste.

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