Beauty Buzz. The Body Shop: Beauty Doesn’t Have to Be a Beast

February 22, 2008 • Beauty


In an age of cheap thrills with massive bills it’s nice to know that some companies are working to do make a profit and make a difference. This week Minnie Driver had some nice words for The Body Shop and here’s why:

Currently, an amazing 60% of The Body Shop products contain at least one Community Trade ingredient, or are gifts or accessories sourced through the program.  By 2010 this figure will rise to 75%, with new suppliers and new ingredients coming on board.

Through Community Trade, The Body Shop spends around US $11.5 million annually buying ingredients, gifts and accessories from marginalized communities across the world, paying a fair price and giving producers access to a global market that would normally be out of their reach.

The news is marked by the announcement of a new Community Trade supplier to enter the fold.  Women in Business Development Inc, of the Polynesian islands of Samoa in the South Pacific, will supply The Body Shop with high-grade, cold-pressed organic virgin coconut oil.  The oil will feature in The Body Shop Coconut Bath & Body Range, an enduring customer favorite since the early days of company founded by ethical entrepreneur Dame Anita Roddick.

Through Community Trade, The Body Shop is providing over 200 people with access to a stable market. Our trade provides an alternative to families who are left with no choice but to rely on money sent from family members working abroad.  By making their own living through coconut, the goal is for the women and their families to be able to build a future in their own communities rather than look abroad.

Also, our direct relationship with the co-operative ensures 100% traceability of the ingredient, helping to guarantee the highest quality organic virgin coconut oil.

The poverty of Samoa has been likened to that of sub-saharan Africa.* While a lush and bountiful island, it is so remote that exporting goods is expensive and Samoans often miss out on trading opportunities for crops it grows.

“This group truly meets our definition of a marginalized community.  Working with The Body Shop has the potential of really putting this beautiful, remote island nation on the map.   We are thrilled be embarking on this new partnership,” says Graham Clewer, Head of Community Trade for The Body Shop International.

Women in Business Development Inc was founded in 1991 to create trading opportunities for Samoan families.  It now supports a range of activities across 90 villages across Samoa, including organic farming, beekeeping, fine mat production and handicrafts and traditional virgin coconut oil production, a practice dating back to the early 1800s.

Face it, you’re going to need lipbalm to why not choose a product that will change lives as well? -Joanne Molina

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