It all started in 2007...
We were about to launch a certified organic range, based on shea. It was essential for us to see the cradle of this fruit, its origins and history. So in December 2009, we went to Burkina-Faso in order to concretize a partnership initiated through the association EPHYLA CONCEPT, with a union of cooperatives of shea butter producers.
When we arrived, we fell in love with the country and the desire to participate in the development of these cooperatives was even stronger. There, our collaboration started with a challenge: to produce organic shea butter which would be used in our organic certified and Ecocert labelled hair care products.
Our team standing before a shea cooperative in Burkina-Faso.
Shea butter is one of the core ingredient of our organic products, and since the beginning we had in mind to get closer to small producers so that they could fully benefit from our markets spin-offs. For years, we went to Burkina-Faso on an yearly basis... Through our "TRAVEL NOTEBOOK ", we will be able to tell you in detail, this beautiful and authentic human adventure which gave birth to the brand K POUR KARITÉ.
CEO OF THE LABORATOIRE ARILAND
In just one year!
Between our mission of 2010 and the one of 2011, the work organization has been entirely reviewed on the platform of the UGPPK association.
The entire transformation process has been completely revised in order to mechanize as many tasks as possible.
Mechanization of the shea butter transformation process
Washing the nuts, sorting, roasting, churning, butter washing and filtering were no longer done manually. As for the nuts crushing and powder grinding the machines were still in production.
Still, a huge step had been made in only one year. As soon as the complete production line was in place, it only took 15 minutes to make 1kg of shea butter instead of 6 hours before! Now, women do receive the same income and they’ve also gained in working comfort. All this time freed up allowed them to go work elsewhere, increasing their income. Their objective was of course to feed their families, but above all to allow their children to go to school as long as possible in order to escape their condition.
We are happy to contribute to this evolution thanks to our commitment to the UGPPK.
For the moment, the main energy source is still wood, burnt in these large chimneys.
All this mechanism is of course very energy-consuming. Fortunately, the development of the UGPPK is based on a global reflection for renewable energies - and at the time we were setting up the production line we thought about the energy to use. That’s why we’ve decided on going for a steam boiler whose fuel would be residues from shea butter washing.
Support for schooling
In 2010, a vehicle breakdown prevented us from visiting the children of the village of Sourou, who were waiting for us to introduce their school and present their projects.
The pupils of the school in Sourou and our team (JM Fert, CEO of the laboratory, in the center / N.Janvier, Marketing Manager, left / N.Chabanol, Sales Manager, right). Photo K for Karité, 2011
During our last mission, we planned this visit at the very beginning of the journey to put all the chances on our side.
Although our visit took place on a Sunday, children and the entire pedagogical team was present to welcome us.
The school in Sourou
We were able to judge their involvement, motivation and dynamism despite the limited means at their disposal.
In order to encourage parents as much as possible to send their children to school, financial aid is granted to them (so that even if they lose their arms, they keep an income). The granting of this aid is linked to the child's success.
The students were proud to show us their classes, and what they were learning...
Only three classrooms for 150 pupils
The village had only 3 classrooms for 150 pupils, for elementary school. Unfortunately numbers of children attending school decrease with the age of the child. Similarly the number of girls decreases at a glance.
Progress still need to be made, but if enrolment is maintained the village would see the opening of additional classes in the near future.
Our team during the visit
Our visit came at a good time, as the teachers had drawn up a list of small jobs to refresh classrooms and improve their study conditions. The budget we gave them was used to finance this work.
First of all, we must keep in mind that activities such as shea nuts’ harvesting and transformation into butter remain seasonal (a few weeks a year). That’s why, we thought interesting to imagine a complementary activity for some women.
As hairdressing plays an important role in their culture and our primary activity is the manufacture of shea-based hair products for hairdressers, it seemed natural for us to set up a partnership with the UGPPK.
Initially, we imagined the creation of a salon/shop within the association offices. The idea was to equip this salon and supply it with products. But for various reasons related to their hairdressing habits and the difficulty to supply them, this project did not succeed.
We therefore decided to participate in the organization of hairdresser training courses for the women of the association, in collaboration with the UGPPK.
At the last news, the project has barely started...
Look changing !
In 2020, the K pour Karité brand is repositioning itself and changes its look.
Indeed, since 2008, the brand has grown and developed. Now it keeps drawing strength from all over the world, throughout the 4 elements: AIR / WATER / EARTH / FIRE. While its roots remain in Africa, K pour Karité is now expanding towards new horizons and destinations. The planet becomes its territory, feeding off its riches and integrating ingredients from all continents into our formulas to keep developing products that respect hair, people and their environment. A new look and new references for a new adventure! With K pour Karité, we told you: the Adventure is in You! Follow us on our journey around the planet, discovering all the ingredients we have selected to offer you the most effective products, with smooth and delicious textures and fragrances.
3 steps for that trip: HAIRSTYLING DESTINATION, CARE AND COLORS DISCOVERY as well as a DETOX STOPOVER. Find more in our TRAVEL NOTEBOOK