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Since the creation of shea butter is an extremely demanding physical activity, it is very important that producers are paid fairly for their work. To understand the positive impacts Fair Trade has on producers around the world, we invite you to read about our COMMITMENT TO FAIR TRADE.

Many rural African women produce shea butter using entirely manual methods. Fortunately, Fair Trade and international cooperation allow shea women producers, like those in Léo, to have access to equipment that makes their work easier. Mills, roasters, and filtering pumps, for example, help increase both the volume and quality of production.

Here are the steps Léo producers use to create all-natural, unrefined shea butter:

1. Pick up and pull out the fruit pulp.

2. Boil the nuts.

3. Rinse and dry the nuts under the sun.

4. Break the nuts in order to shell them. Conserve the almonds.

5. Wash the almonds in a mortar.

6. Manually sort the almonds, keeping the best for the shea butter while using others for making soaps and cooking butter.

7. Mechanically crush the almonds.

8. Crush and roast almonds on a wood fire.

9. Grind the roasted almonds.

10. Cream with water to dilute the paste.

11. Mechanically churn the mixture.

12. Wash the emulsion.

13. Cook the emulsion.

14. Manually filter the butter (warm oil consistency).

15. Mechanically filter it with a Canadian Maple Syrup machine.

16. Wrap/pack the product in containers according to clients’ specifications.