The Value of The Shea Tree
The shea tree, also known as karité in French, is a tree species native to the central belt of Africa, growing in approximately 20 countries between Guinea and Uganda as well as Mali, Senegal, Ghana, and Burkina Faso.
Shea butter is the natural fat extract from the nut of the shea tree. Shea butter has been hand-crafted and used for centuries by Africans as food oil, a therapeutic skin balm, and an intensive moisturizer.
Through a decentralized processing model, the StarShea Network produces shea butter in its purest form using traditional hand-processing techniques. Through training, our women in their communities have learned how to improve upon their traditional techniques, from the collection of nuts to the optimal way of packaging shea butter. They have also been taken through all the processing stages to ensure that all steps are followed to produce top-quality butter.
StarShea, a Social Business
StarShea Network is a federation of rural women’s groups in northern Ghana specializing in this age-old tradition of harvesting and processing all-natural shea nuts and butter. The Northern regions of Ghana where we operate are the poorest in the nation.
The network was initiated through a project by PlaNet Finance, the global microfinance and development expert, and SAP, the world’s leading provider of business software. Both have teamed up to support women in northern Ghana to provide large volumes of high-quality shea products directly to large buyers, at fair trade prices. This is accomplished by providing women’s groups with an innovative variety of services: shea and business training, microcredit, software solutions and mobile phone technology.
An innovative structure was launched in 2012: StarShea Ltd., a company of PlaNet Finance Group, financed by SAP. The mission of this social business is to empower rural Ghanaian women engaged in informal shea processing and to provide them with access to a business as well as economic benefits not formally available in many rural areas.
Buy Responsibly a High-Quality, 100% Natural Product in Industrial Quantities
At StarShea, we think social, but also quality and quantity. We are committed to offering our clients the best shea products on the market.
• Samples tested to ensure consistently high-quality kernels: we monitor FFA, Peroxide value, moisture, and unsaponifiable matter of our production.
• Our nuts and butter are traceable to individual women, thanks to a sophisticated ICT system.
• Using traditional handmade processing techniques that preserve all of the product’s therapeutic properties.
• No chemicals are used in the production process.
A Variety of Shea Butter and Nuts Available:
• Pure unrefined shea butter.
• Refined butter on demand following client specifications
• Raw nuts.
• Certified organic and fair trade butter.
• Certified organic and fair trade Nuts.
In 2014-2015, the expected available quantities are:
• Nuts: 2000 Metric Tons in 2014, 3000 Metric Tons in 2015.
• Butter: 300 Metric Tons in 2014 as well as 2015.
And to be sure to cover all our clients’ needs, part of our production is certified by recognised bodies:
• Fair For Life certification by IMO : fairtrade certification.
• EU Organic certification by Ecocert.
• NOP Organic certification by Ecocert.
• ESR certification by Ecocert : Organic and Fairtrade certification.
Do you want to know more about what we offer?
Learn how to buy responsibly and invest in a high-quality, 100% natural product from a trustworthy source.
And do not hesitate to contact us!
In The News
StarShea Nonprofit in Ghana to Become an Independent Social Business
Four years ago PlaNet Finance and SAP came together to form the StarShea Network. Now the nonprofit collective has transitioned to an incorporated, stand-alone business. Started in 2009 to help 1,500 women in rural Northern Ghana manage and grow their shea nut business, the newly named StarShea Ltd. has grown to a network of more than 10,000 women. Read the announcement
StarShea Ltd at the Global Shea Alliance Conference, Abuja
StarShea attended the 2013 Global Shea Alliance conference in Abuja with the PlaNet Finance team.