At StarShea, we are willing to build long term partnerships with our clients, co-investing in the development of the network and our women’s groups who make our Network possible.
In 2011, The StarShea Network sold its first unrefined butter container to a large German trading company for the cosmetics industry.
In 2012, StarShea sold three and half containers (63 metric tons) of unrefined and refined butter. This was sold to renowned wholesalers, refiners, and cosmetics ingredients suppliers in Europe and the U.S.
In 2013, the social business continued to grow with about 200 metric tons of orders for regular butter. Moreover StarShea obtained both organic and Fair Trade Certifications and sold its first containers of 100% organic butter, certified by IMO, and also Fair For Life butter.
Since 2013, StarShea has a partnership with Symrise for its Fair For Life butter offer, and from 2014, with Emile Noël, an oil miller, for the ESR butter produced by StarShea women.
Symrise is a global supplier of fragrances, flavourings, cosmetic active ingredients, raw materials, as well as functional ingredients. Its clients include manufacturers of perfumes, cosmetics, food and beverages. The pharmaceutical industry and producers of nutritional supplements by sales, Symrise is among the top four global companies in flavours and fragrances markets. Headquartered in Holzminden, Germany, the Group is represented in over 35 countries in Europe, Africa, the Middle East, Asia, the United States and Latin America. Symrise works with its clients to develop new ideas and market-ready concepts for products that form an indispensable part of everyday life. The company was awarded the German Sustainability Award in 2012. In 2013, Symrise was certified as a “Green Company” by DQS.
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A French oil milling company whose origins date back to the 50s, Emile Noël is a pioneer of the organic production: it was the first oil miller to crush organic seeds in 1972. In the 80s, Emile Noël invented blended oils whose balanced fatty acids were commended by nutritionists. It is also a forerunner of Fairtrade: Long before fair trade reached the mainstream, the company directly developed equitable, solidarity-based commercial relationships with sesame growers in Africa in 1985. Since the 90s, Emile Noël have continually been among the first in its sector to be certified to quality standards: ISO, Organic Solidarity, Organic Fair Trade, Cosmébio, etc.
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IOI Loders Croklaan
IOI Loders Croklaan one of the two major players in the shea industry. Based in The Netherlands it serves mostly the food market with a range of product using fractionated shea nuts. The company is also trying to shift a larger part of the added value to the African continent by using local processing units in across different countries of the region. For the first part of processing, prior to sending nuts to the Netherlands or Malaysia for further refining. The company engages in a sustainable value chain approach by increasing the share of products sourced directly from women organizations and cooperatives. The collaboration with StarShea has been set within this context, since the social business acts as the commercial body of the StarShea Network, which is now approaching the 15.000 members. IOI Loders Croklaan wishes to build a long term partnership with StarShea Ltd and is therefore offering quality premium on top of market prices for the nuts. Close to 200MT of volume was achieved in 2012 with the women of StarShea Network. The minimum objective is to double this volume during next season and multiply in the following year as more members join the Network.
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Ghana Specialty Fats Limited
In 2011 GSFL (i.e. Wilmar) purchased over 183 metric tons of shea nuts from StarShea
The Asia based company Wilmar is the largest global processor and merchandiser of palm and lauric oils. With its headquarters in Singapore, the group operates in more than 20 countries across four continents, with products sold to more than 50 countries. Wilmar employs more than 88,000 staff. The company’s business strategy involves building an integrated business model which captures the entire value chain of the agricultural commodity processing business. From origin, processing, transportation, branding, merchandising, and distributing a wide range of agricultural products. These products include shea nuts, which Wilmar purchases from Northern Ghana through the company Ghana Specialty Fats Limited. The nuts purchased are from rural women who have been trained on how to process high-quality nuts. GSFL also pays a premium for high-quality nuts with sustainable background. Managing director of GSFL, Mr. Santosh Pillai, states “Wilmar is excited to have partnered with the StarShea Network in this project which works with women pickers and focuses on processing high-quality nuts. The premium pricing for the quality nuts ensures that real economic benefits reach the grass-root level women pickers.”
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Olam was StarShea’s first significant international customer. The Nigerian founded enterprise established in 1989 is now a global leader in the supply chain management of agricultural products and food ingredients. With operations across more than 60 countries, Olam markets products to more than 10,000 customers and has over 13,000 employees. Olam is an example of how to thrive in emerging markets. Shea nuts were the first products Olam exported out of Ghana. They began exporting Shea even before coffee, cashews, or cocoa. With its principal office in Accra, Olam runs procurement, distribution, and warehousing units all over Ghana. “There is an increased demand in the global markets for reliably high-quality products and, at the same time, a request for traceability along the entire supply chain,” said Mritunjay Das, manager of nuts, Olam Ghana. ”Buying from the StarShea Network, we buy high quality nuts directly from the women, and are very pleased that we can achieve both market requirements through this initiative. Olam bought over 93 metric tons of shea nuts from the StarShea Network in 2010.
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