Social Impact: Berber women
Argan oil is a women’s affair! The hard working women behind production are often underpaid in the market of low priced argan oil. At Ayelli we make sure that these women are socially and financially independent. A fair trade production of argan oil can better the status of 3 million people in the rural Berber communities. It is one of the pillars of a growing economy and often the only means of empowerment for the Berber women who have been producing the oil for centuries. Fair compensation for their hard labor is crucial for these women’s well-being and the continuity of the argan oil production.
At Ayelli, our pure argan oil is only made by established cooperatives extraordinarily managed by women. We help provide the Berber women with a steady income, yearly bonuses and a good working environment. In addition to financial freedom, we provide literacy classes, and access to health care and schooling for the employees’ children. Their jobs producing our argan oil helps Berber women to gain social & economic independence, a level of autonomy they wouldn’t otherwise have in a male dominated culture, thus giving them a vital role in the region’s development and their children’s future. When women benefit, children benefit!
The argan tree’s (Argania Spinosa) deep roots are the most important stabilizing element in the desert and the last barrier against desertification. They protect the soil against rain and erosion, maintain soil fertility, and have the unique ability to draw water from 100 feet below, allowing other plants in to feed from their supply. The argan tree has been a vital part of the Berber village life and helps to preserve local ecosystems.
However, the future of the argan tree is threatened. Over-grazing, wood- cutting and allowing animals to eat the fruits cause permanent harm leading to the regression of the argan tree forest. These preoccupations are often not a priority for the local Berber people. We care at Ayelli; we personally ensure the environmental preservation of the argan tree and encourage sustainable growth through our teaching the farmers best environmental practices while finding the best economic use for argan oil.
PS: If you are wondering what happens to the trees after you get your Ayelli Argan Oil you will be happy to know that nothing is wasted. The Argan tree gives everything it has: the fruits’ dried outer layer is fed to cattle and goats, the seeds’ pulp make natural masks and soaps and the seeds’ oil is pressed for you!