Rapunzel: New criteria for HAND IN HAND program
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Rapunzel Naturkost has revised the criteria for its Fairtrade programme HAND IN HAND (HIH). The HIH program has been in existence for 25 years. The new version 5-2018 of the HIH criteria has been in force since 16 July 2018. From January 2019, it will form the basis for the controls of the HIH partners.
The most important changes:
▪ Fair prices: Rapunzel has always assured its HIH partners of a minimum price, which includes an organic and fair trade premium and is above the average, conventional market prices. Reference values, e.g. from FLO Fairtrade, serve as an orientation. These reference values for a minimum price, which is never undershot, are now also defined in writing.
▪ Premium: The HIH premium is an important aspect of the Rapunzel HIH program for partners. Farmers and employees of HIH partners continue to decide on the use of this fair trade premium for eco-social projects. Now they also define in writing how they do this and document their decisions. In addition, Rapunzel regularly checks together with the HIH partners whether an adjustment of the premium is necessary.
▪ Pre-financing: Rapunzel has always supported the HIH partners with a harvest pre-financing. Now it is also stipulated that all smallholder cooperatives have a guaranteed right to it.
▪ Inspection and certification: If a HIH partner does not meet the minimum criteria even after several months, it is temporarily suspended. The HIH premium is paid into the HIH fund during this period. At the same time Rapunzel is working with the HIH partner to ensure that he can meet the criteria again.
▪ Support for unavailability of goods (e.g. in the event of massive crop failures due to extreme weather events): If the HIH partner cannot deliver the goods as agreed upon, Rapunzel still pays the HIH premium to the partner concerned and thus supports him in his difficult situation. The prerequisite for this is that no other fair trade goods are available and organic goods are used instead.
According to Rapunzel, the feedback of independent inspectors and experts as well as that of the cultivation partners were taken into account when revising the criteria. In addition, Rapunzel took up and formulated some points of existing practice even more clearly.
Please find more information on the Rapunzel website.