Our Ethical People Policy
What is Ethical? Our definition of the word ethical is very detailed & encompasses the style of thinking where the welfare of our planet, the people & the animals who live on it are of paramount importance. We believe that upholding an ethical stance should reflect in all the ways that we trade - from where we buy our ingredients to the way we price our end products! Being ethical means that the producer is paid a price which enables them to continue to produce their wares & to live in dignity & for the customer to pay a fair price for a product which will help not harm them or the planet on which they live.
At Akamuti, we are passionate about trading ethically & fairly. We believe that we can achieve this by paying a fair price to small businesses & individuals from communities around the world. This means that we pay a price that reflects the volume of labour that goes into producing the product. For example 1 kilo of shea butter takes a total of 24 hours of labour to produce & the world market price of 20 pence per kilo is not good enough by any standard. A fair price for the raw ingredients, ensures that all production costs are covered with enough money remaining to provide accessible funds that can build a better, more sustainable life for people otherwise trapped by poverty. This ethos continues along the line – it is all very well buying fair trade but it isn’t fair if you then ask an unfair retail price from the consumer! So we do our best to stay fair from start to finish by keeping our ideals & our products real in all senses of the word. Breaking the Poverty Cycle? By ensuring that producers are paid a fair price for their produce, we can contribute towards protecting not only vulnerable livelihoods, but also their environments & the cultural traditions central to their lives. So many cultures are under threat from unscrupulous trading activity. Paying a fair price ripples throughout the community & paves the way for sustainability & freedom from poverty. Poor prices paid for high quality, labour-intensive products results in undermining the value of a product & the people who produce it. In addition to this, it takes away the very foundations of sustainable trade, making it harder for people to survive as a community. Unfair trade feeds the oppressive cycle of poverty & we believe that we can break that chain by supporting fair trade practices & principles & buying directly from co-operatives & individuals. Modern Day Slavery? Poverty created by cut-throat trading is nothing less than a modern form of slavery. Poverty is an unnecessary force that removes power from the individual & keeps communities oppressed & takes away the right to a life of independence & freedom. As the buyers, we have the power to break that chain by demanding fair trade & spreading this message to consumers. Every penny we spend supports a cause & a system, whether it is British organic eggs or Aberdeen Angus beef imported from Argentina. If we all think before we buy, we can collectively help to stem the rising tide of greed & hunger for under valued produce that fuels the heady lust for consumerism – the love child of unfair trade. Devaluation? History has paved the way for attitude problems towards people & the planet. The sooner we can make steps towards injecting care & compassion into our work ethic, the sooner we can begin rebuilding the damage caused by devaluation. Our lack of appreciation in everything we have around us – from the earth under our feet to the people who live on it, to the food we consume to the clothes which we wear, are all symptoms of the capitalist philosophy that drives the cogs of the so-called "Modern" World. Our trading ethic seeks to move away from this philosophy & enable people to rebuild their self respect. Consumer Power? The Western world has spent the best part of a millennium paying as little as possible for valuable resources or more often, not paying for them at all. This superior attitude of "claim & name" has left deep scars across many continents, where arrogance & authoritarianism abound. There is a price being paid & this is being paid by other human beings. Consumerism is very much alive today but we mustn’t under estimate the power of consumer spending - each & every consumer can vote with their pockets. After all, its our buying habits that makes the rich richer & the poor poorer.