About the Cafedirect Producers Foundation

The Cafedirect Producers Foundation (CPF) has been changing the lives of farmers all over the world for a few years now, and the secret to its success is a focus on sustainability. While the foundation is a helping hand to farmers, its true value lies in the ability to help share valuable information through its Centres of Excellence.

Read the inspirational story of Luke Metto, a Kenyan farmer with a vision for the future.

The Centres of Excellence

Cafedirect Producers Foundation founded the Centres of Excellence to help farmers teach other farmers in best practice farming techniques, who have since shown great innovation and drive in developing solutions. Smallholders are generally not recognised as innovators, but farmers in Kenya through the Sireet Outgrower Empowerment Programme have changed that perception.

Impressed with the programme, since 2007 CPF has worked closely with these smallholders. They established the Centre of Excellence as living classrooms to train visiting farmers and test ideas. Run by the farmers themselves, we meet up with Luke to learn his story.

Meet farmer Luke Metto

Luke Metto is a retired teacher with a passion for thinking outside the box when it comes to farming his land. Through his work at the Sireet Outgrower Empowerment Programme he met CPF in 2010. Climate change had been causing problems in the area and land that was suitable for farming decreased each year. Worried by this trend, Luke became one of the key teachers at the new Sireet-OEP Centre for Excellence.

Luke’s first aim was to show other smallholders how to farm in an innovative way on a small piece of land. As a farmer himself with a small 3 acre plot, Luke had experience in how to maximise the potential. He divided it into sections: a kitchen garden to grow vegetables, beehives producing honey and also an artificial wetland. On this wetland, Luke was able to grow some of the tallest Arrow Root plants local workers have ever seen – to think that this wetland had only been made possible due to a farmer exchange visit.

Hands up for diversification

Luke’s biggest achievement has been his use of easy hydroponic techniques to help develop a zero-grazing unit for cows. Hydroponics is a farming technology that doesn’t require soil, but uses a water-based solution containing all the nutrients plants need. It means you need only a small space which will deliver a high yield, and you can feed livestock on limited plots of land, using the rest of the land for other income.

This is an important step – price volatility of products, along with decreasing yields due to climate change mean that farmers’ incomes and livelihoods are under a constant threat. Relying on a single crop is a risky business for smallholder farmers, so diversification is essential.

Sustainable futures

Luke is living a much more financially stable life after diversifying his land. The income from his small enterprises has allowed him to invest more in his farm. He is excited about expanding his current business in future, as well as looking to innovate further.

Luke’s site is flourishing and has been noticed by visitors from other farming groups. More and more farmers who visit Luke’s farm can return home with fresh ideas they can implement, as well as share their progress through the farmers’ network. The Centre of Excellence has seed funds available for them to do this.

The result of the entire enterprise is a simple one: the Cafedirect Producers Foundation is known as an extremely sustainable support model, enabling African producers to improve knowledge, decision-making skills and their overall livelihoods. Great news indeed.


Please donate to the Cafedirect Producers’ Foundation (via JustGiving) & change a life: https://www.justgiving.com/gaurogrqpb/donate/

Website: http://producersfoundation.org/
Contact: info@producersfoundation.org

Our Favourite Christmas Gifts For Her

Choosing the perfect gift for the women in your life can be difficult. You want something that shows just how much you care, but that they will also appreciate, whether it’s something practical, beautiful, or both! If you’re having trouble finding the ideal Christmas gift, you don’t have to worry because we have some great ideas here for you!

Continue reading Our Favourite Christmas Gifts For Her

The Best Christmas Gadgets For Him

Buying the perfect gift for the main man in your life – the man who has everything he needs – is always a difficult task. Thankfully we’ve put together a little selection of our favourite ethical gadgets, from eco-friendly electronics to money saving coffee makers, to help inspire you! And don’t forget you can view some great gifts in our ‘Gifts For Him’ section. Continue reading The Best Christmas Gadgets For Him

NEW Baby & Kids Bath & Body Care from Ecozone

Ecozone have always been known to offer high quality, eco-friendly household cleaning alternatives, and have now introduced a range of baby & kids bath & bodycare so you can bathe your little ones safe in the knowledge that you aren’t using any harsh chemicals. Continue reading NEW Baby & Kids Bath & Body Care from Ecozone

How to choose ethical jewellery

Many of us are willing to pay extra for artisan bread. We appreciate the quality of ingredients, the long, traditional process that has gone into creating the loaf, and the care and expertise that artisan bakers use.

So we’re curious to know what images come to mind when you think of small-scale artisanal mining? Groups of people panning for gold, smiles on their faces, and working with hand tools doing something they love?

Continue reading How to choose ethical jewellery

Introducing Organyc Tampons and Pads

Organyc is not a complete new brand for us. We have sold their organic cotton sanitary towels and tampons before, but we’ve never had a chance to really introduce them to you. Plus the range has expanded so there’s more to talk about now!

Why Organyc?

Conventional tampons and pads are made from synthetic materials like viscose, rayon, polypropylene and super absorbent polymers. Since these are primarily made from plastic they aren’t really that good for the environment, and they probably aren’t great to have so close to your skin for up to 8 hours a day.

As you can guess from the name, Organyc use certified organic cotton in their sanitary products, cleaned with a naturally occurring disinfectant rather than bleached with nasty chemicals. Organic cotton is naturally soft and breathable so skin is not irritated. Plus the pads and tampons are still super absorbent.

Organyc products are even more eco-friendly because they are biodegradable and compostable, reducing the amount of waste ending up in landfill and our seas. The packaging is also environmentally friendly as the cardboard is recycled and the pads are wrapped in Mater-Bí®.

Pads

Organyc pads & panty liners have an absorbent internal core made from 100% organic cotton wool with a superior layer of pure, non woven organic cotton. They are free from perfume, colouring agents and super absorbent polymers. Packaged in a bioplastic film and with recycled cardboard boxes, it is completely biodegradable and compostable.

Tampons

Made from 100% organic cotton, Organyc tampons reduce the risk of irritations and allergies. The tampons come in a choice of with or without an applicator. The cardboard applicator is more eco-friendly and has a softly rounded tip for easy insertion.

Intimate care

And let’s not forget the intimate care. With wet wipes made from 100% organic cotton and intimate wash made with natural ingredients. The intimate care range is free from alcohol, chlorine, parabens and SLS.

Have you made the switch to organic cotton sanitary products? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

Introducing Organii – Natural Health & Beauty

Let me introduce you to one of our newest health & beauty brands – Organii. Committed to creating effective ethical bath & body products, the company sources certified organic ingredients and works with manufacturers who share their ethical views.

Organii believe that everyone should be able to benefit from organic products, which is why they constantly strive to achieve fair priced toiletries for you. Their collection includes sun protection, shower gel, soap bars, hand soap, plasters and mouthwash, suitable for the whole family. Not only are the products certified organic, they are also suitable for vegans which means no animal ingredients, no animal testing and generally no animal exploitation. Enjoy your bath or shower with a clean conscious.

Let’s talk about the packaging too. It’s absolutely gorgeous. These are some beautiful looking toiletries that you wouldn’t mind having out on your bathroom counter. The clean white packaging with bright colours in different shapes makes it fun to use for everyone.

Since Organii uses natural formulas in all products there are no harsh chemicals so they will always be kind to your skin, especially sensitive skin. They are also free from parabens and SLS!

What makes Organii even better is that it comes in a wide range of fragrances, from liquorice to fragrance free, so there is something for everyone!

We love Organii because of the ethical credentials, commitment to protect the planet and because the products are affordable. Have you tried it yet? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!

The Cheeky Panda – Sustainable Bamboo Toilet Paper

Toilet roll is one of the most common household items. Unfortunately toilet roll can be really damaging to the environment, not only in flushing but also during production since it’s made from trees! Most toilet paper is FSC certified so it comes from sustainable sources, and recycled toilet tissue is an option. We’d like to introduce you to The Cheeky Panda – if you haven’t already tried it – toilet paper made from bamboo!

The Cheeky Panda bamboo toilet tissue - 9 rolls
The Cheeky Panda bamboo toilet tissue – 9 rolls

Bamboo grows 30 times faster than a tree, producing 30% more oxygen and absorbing 35% more carbon. Bamboo is wasted because it grows so fast and must be harvested at least once a year. If not it will flower and attract rodents which can have a devastating effect on the ecosystem.

Chris & Julie – the founders of The Cheeky Panda, decided to use this waste bamboo to create luxuriously soft, sustainable and eco-friendly toilet roll which is also anti-fungal, anti-bacterial and hypo-allergenic. The toilet tissue is free from any harsh chemicals like formaldehyde and it BPA free.

The Cheeky Panda is a very new company, and has already been a finalist in the Virgin VOOM awards, Business Green Leaders Awards, Essex Business Excellence Awards and The Lloyds Bank National Business Awards. It’s not hard to see why, The Cheeky Panda has grown a lot as a company in the last year. Yet it still manages to keep the environment and sustainability at its core. The toilet paper is 100% FSC Certified, uses bamboo that is far from Panda’s habitats, and comes in recyclable packaging!

Have you tried The Cheeky Panda bamboo toilet tissue? Let us know what you think in the comments below!

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Meet Method eco-friendly cleaning

We’re big fans of Method, and stock a wide range of their excellent eco-friendly cleaning, laundry and home products. As well as being stylish enough to want to keep on display instead of hiding in a cupboard, their range reflects their ethos of creating positive social and environmental change.

Biodegradable and responsible
They use the ‘Cradle to Cradle’ philosophy which informs how products are designed to be at every single stage of a product’s life – this ensures all materials are sourced, used and recycled safely with as little environmental impact as possible. They make their bottles from recycled plastic which is also recyclable, and use ingredients from renewable and plant-based materials that safely biodegrade instead of persisting in nature. They also make handy refills which cut down on even more packaging!

Method cleaning

Green building award
The new Method ‘South Side Soapbox’ manufacturing plant in Chicago has earned the privilege of being the industry’s very first LEED-platinum certified manufacturing facility, which is the premier standard in green buildings! Not only does it create jobs for local residents in a neighbourhood which struggled for years, but a host of green measures like a solar water heating system and a 75,000 square foot water-efficient greenhouse roof ensure that the whole place is as eco-friendly as possible.

Beach clean up
Method have also partnered with Sustainable Coastlines Hawaii to clean up rubbish from beaches, shed light on ocean plastic waste and helped Project AWARE clean up, and they’ve even made bottles created from ocean plastic waste. Method are always looking for ways to raise awareness, reduce waste and help us clean up without impact, and we can’t wait to see what innovation they bring next!

What’s your favourite Method product?

Supporting Whale & Dolphin Conservation

Did you know there are over 80 types of whales and dolphins? Whale and Dolphin Conservation (known as WDC) is the leading global charity dedicated to their conservation and protection. WDC defends these amazing creatures against the many threats they face – via campaigns, lobbying, conservation projects, advising governments, field research and animal rescue. Their vision is a world where every whale and dolphin is safe and free. Continue reading Supporting Whale & Dolphin Conservation