Shared Earth as a FAIR TRADING COMPANY believe in ensuring that the artisans who make their products get a fair wage and they work in a safe and healthy environment. They try to make sure that the community as well as the individual benefits from their trade, and they visit as many suppliers as possible to check that fair standards are being applied, for instance adequate lighting and ventilation in the workplace, no child labour and gender equality. They also aim to minimise harm to the environment by using sustainable or recycled materials in production, and shipping goods by sea instead of by air.
Shared Earth are a member of the World Fair Trade Organization (WFTO) and regularly monitor our performance against the ethical standards set by WFTO.
The majority of their products are bought direct from abroad, from suppliers who are members of WFTO, or who have been recommended by other WFTO members. Many of these suppliers have been set up as non-profit organisations to enable small-scale producer groups to export effectively, and to help them develop their products for larger markets like the UK. Most producers are organised in family groups or co-operatives, often in rural areas or small towns, and are highly skilled in their craft but have little experience of selling beyond a local market.
By buying from Shared Earth, you are helping to provide much-needed jobs in countries like India, Cambodia, Kenya and Peru – for people who are often on the margins of society with little or no other source of income.