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Pure Beginnings is committed to fair trade practices and protecting biodiversity. The Pure Beginnings baby and kids products are fair trade accredited through Phytotrade Africa, who use ingredients that have been ethically sourced from fair trade initiatives in Sub-Saharan Africa.
Phytotrade’s purpose is to alleviate poverty and protect biodiversity in the region by developing an industry that is not only economically successful but also ethical and sustainable. Pure Beginnings sources ingredients from various Phytotrade community projects. These producers come from various Southern African countries such as Botswana, Madagascar, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
1. Environmental Impact
2. Social & Cultural Impact
3. Economic Impact
We explore the positive effects of each of these further.
- Environmental Impact
The basic premise is that if trees are worth something to the producers and communities that live with them, then they have an incentive to value and conserve them and the surrounding ecosystems. Over the years, the impact monitoring research has shown that this premise carries weight. PhytoTrade has seen local producers set up tree nurseries and monitoring the condition of trees in community forests and in the wilderness of their own volition. In some countries, producers have developed new systems for tree conservation. They carefully protect naturally regenerating seedlings that would have previously been eaten by livestock or cleared or burned for agricultural expansion. This new-found knowledge and understanding of biodiversity friendly harvesting and conservation practices, is being passed to producers without outside intervention.
- Social & Cultural Impact
PhytoTrade Africa has seen powerful examples of social and cultural renewal in some communities where they work. It is one of the most satisfying aspects seeing first hand evidence of women who feel more empowered as they gain greater financial independence. This is often realised as producers get larger incomes from the sale of natural products which they typically re-invest into other household enterprises such as constructing houses for renting out, sewing, livestock, micro-credit schemes or kiosks. This enables them to gain increasing returns and to break the cycle of poverty. In this way, the producers are better able to meet their basic needs necessary for day to day survival – and through, for example being able to send their kids to school, might also break the cycle of generational poverty.
- Economic Impact
PhytoTrade works to create and support small biotrade businesses to gain the tools they need to be sustainable and profitable. This is done by involving these businesses and communities in value adding activities which encourage responsible business practices, technological transfer, product innovation, job creation, increased incomes and retaining biodiversity and promoting economic growth and trade integration throughout the region. Small to medium enterprises affiliated to PhytoTrade employ more than 500 skilled and semi-skilled people, with potential to become multimillion dollar enterprises.