Germany: 20 years hand in hand label by Rapunzel Naturkost
by Redaktion (comments: 0)
Since the beginning of Rapunzel Naturkost, the thought that actions can change the world has been an important principle to the company. Already in 1992, the organic food manufacturer introduced the Hand in Hand label combining for the first time the goals of organic cultivation and fair trade. To this end both the ecological quality of the products and especially the quality of the cooperation with the suppliers play important roles.
It started in the mid 1980s when organic pioneer Joseph Wilhelm, founder and owner of Rapunzel Naturkost, traveled to Bolivia in search of organic cocoa. There he convinced the cocoa farmers of the El Ceibo Cooperative of the advantages associated with organic agriculture. At the same time, with Rapunzel he presented the farmers with a reliable buyer of organic cocoa, paying prices that exceeded by far the world market prices of that time. The underlying conviction that has been influencing decisions until today is that ecological sustainability always needs economic and social sustainability. Out of this partnership the Hand in Hand program developed in the early 1990s. At that time, the program was the first program of its kind.
Cocoa, coffee, coconut, sugar, sesame, quinoa, palm oil, mangos, cashew nuts or pecans – today Rapunzel processes and sells organic raw materials from 15 Hand in Hand partners from 12 different countries in Asia, Africa and Latin America. More than 90 Rapunzel products carry the label. The turnover generated by these products has been increasing continuously and has grown to almost 17 million euros corresponding to more than 10 % of the company’s total turnover. Prerequisite for getting the label is that more than 50 % of the organic raw materials are produced by Hand in Hand farmers.
Rapunzel donates every year 1 % of the purchase price of the raw materials to a fund that has been jointly managed since 1997 by the German Environmental Aid (DUH) and Rapunzel. This fund supports nonprofit, eco-social projects in so-called developing countries. Since 1998, the Hand in Hand fund has supported 154 projects around the world with more than 665,000 euros. More information is available here: www.rapunzel.de/hand-in-hand.html
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