Shea Butter from Burkina Faso

The shea butter for Dr. Hauschka Skin Care comes from Burkino Faso. In 2001, we provided the stimulus for an organically certified project in the region around Diarabakoko in the south-west of the country. Since 2019, this project is not only certified organic, but also fair trade. The company pays a correspondingly higher price for the shea butter. This benefits 4,000 families in 21 villages in Burkina Faso. The additional amount is invested in initiatives such as training, health programs and drinking water treatment as well as in the development of the villages. Last year, for example, schools received better equipment, drinking water analyses were carried out and first aid kits were made available.

 

 

Women's gold: Shea butter

The approximately 4,000 collectors in the project village of Diarabakoko independently organise themselves in a producer association. This is a women-only association, as is common and natural in Africa. Shea butter has always been a women’s thing and only they are authorised to harvest the nuts. Their earnings from the shea nut sales enable them to pay for their children’s school fees – so that all of them, rather than just the lucky few can go to school. They are also able to pay for basic essentials like food and medicines.

 

Process within the country

WALA’s approach to cultivation partnerships is to ensure that as much of the value chain as possible remains within the country, and to make the suppliers independent of WALA so they can better develop a sound economic base. With this in mind, the WALA shea butter cultivation partnership has established the necessary conditions to allow the nuts to be almost completely processed in the region: After harvesting the nuts within the scope of the project, the women shell, dry and place them into interim storage in warehouses that are co-financed by WALA. The nearby organic and fair-certified company Agrifaso, with its head office in Bobo-Dioulasso, purchases the nuts and uses transporters to move them straight from the villages to its small processing unit. There, the shelled nuts are pressed under warm conditions and turned into shea butter. Agrifaso has 50 permanent employees, who ensure the continual production of the shea butter in consistently good quality.  Only refining takes place in Europe.

 

 

 

A selection of Dr. Hauschka products that contain valuable shea butter