Now, let's talk about something we all love - chocolate. We usually see it as a sweet treat, a small indulgence. But there's more to it than just cocoa and sugar. Let's take the example of Tony’s Chocolonely from "The Solutionists." Unlike your regular chocolate bar that breaks into perfect little squares, Tony's bars break into uneven chunks. And there's a deep message behind this design choice.
The uneven chunks represent the glaring income inequality and the widespread use of illegal child labor in the cocoa industry. As per a 2020 NORC study, over 1.5 million children were found working illegally in the cocoa supply chains of just two countries - Ghana and Ivory Coast. Modern slavery is another dark secret hidden in these supply chains, with around 30,000 victims identified by the Walk Free Foundation in 2018.
Shea Butter: Your Skincare's Secret Weapon, But What About The Heroes Behind It?
Have you ever looked at the ingredient list on your favorite skincare product? Chances are, shea butter is listed there.
This luxurious, creamy butter is treasured in the skincare world for its nourishing and moisturizing properties. But have you ever wondered how this magical ingredient makes its way into your products?
Shea butter's journey starts in the vast landscapes of Africa, where it plays a crucial role in the livelihoods of approximately 16 million women. These incredible women are the backbone of the shea butter industry—they harvest, process, and sell shea nuts, turning them into the velvety butter that finds its way into your skincare.
This process not only provides them with a valuable source of income but also promotes autonomy and independence, often allowing them to make financial decisions without needing to seek approval from their male counterparts.
But just as every rose has its thorns, the shea butter industry is not all smooth sailing. Today, the traditional art of shea butter production is being overshadowed by industrial machinery. Middlemen are buying shea nuts at minimal rates and producing shea butter at an industrial level, rendering many women jobless and sacrificing the quality of the butter produced.
Is this really sustainable for your skincare’s hero ingredient, shea butter?
How Can We 'Do Better' with &Better?
&Better, a sustainable personal care brand, walks the talk. &Better is not just about making excellent personal care products like shampoo bars, body scrub bars, and conditioner bars; &Better is also about putting community sustainability into every step.
&Better sources shea butter from Ghana. But they do it differently. &Better pays the local Ghana women community double the market rate. So, every time you buy an &Better product, you are contributing to these hardworking women. That's the power of conscious buying.
And it doesn't stop there. &Better uses top-quality ingredients. For instance, the shampoo bars contain up to 25% unrefined, triple-A shea butter. That's far more than the market average. Plus, &Better uses a cold-process method. This retains the goodness of the ingredients, making it better for you, for the hardworking farmers, and the environment.
How Can You Be a Conscious Consumer?
We all have the power to change. We can choose to support brands like Tony’s Chocolonely and &Better. Brands that don't just promise quality but also fair trade and sustainability. And we can do all this with our everyday choices.
Remember, each purchase is like a vote. You're voting for the practices of the company that makes the product. So, the next time you shop, ask yourself: am I making the right choice? Can I do better?
Can We Create a Better World Together?
In a world healing from the pandemic, your choices matter more than ever. We can help create a world where companies thrive without exploiting the vulnerable. All it takes is the will to make conscious choices.
Change isn't easy, but it's necessary. And every step, no matter how small, counts. So, are you ready to be a part of this journey? Are you ready to do better with &Better? Together, we can make a difference. We can create a world where everyone thrives.