AAK has revealed that three of its shea-based emollients, LIPEX SheaSoft TR, LIPEX SheaLiquid TR and LIPEX Shea, now carry the South Pole Climate Neutral Product label.
In an initiative designed to help personal care customers achieve their Scope 3 emissions targets, the company has also committed to continue building capacity for future verified climate-neutral shea products.
This announcement is the result of a partnership with FairClimateFund to scale a project generating Fairtrade and Gold Standard carbon credits from the AAK shea supply region.
The project reduces CO2 emissions through energy-efficient cookstoves that also improve health and safety and save precious firewood, minimizing the impact on the landscape in the project areas.
In addition, the Fairtrade premium from the carbon credit scheme goes back to households for communities to invest in climate adaptation measures to further protect the landscape around them.
"By rooting our carbon credits in simple and cost-effective interventions that make a real and relevant difference, we can connect part of the needs of the communities at the shea supply chain origin with those at a corporate and consumer level," said Lisette Townsend, Global Business Development and Marketing Manager at AAK Personal Care.
"Traditionally, women in the shea belt cook all their meals over simple three-stone fires, which they also use for processing the kernels they collect and sell. The project teaches them how to build and maintain more energy-efficient cookstoves using locally available materials,” she added.
“These significantly cut down on carbon emissions and reduce smoke inhalation and burns. On top of that, the faster cooking and fewer hours spent collecting firewood results in women having more free time for other non-shea-related income-generating activities.”
AAK has invested in generating renewable energy from shea meal, a side stream from shea butter production, at its main processing plant in Aarhus, Denmark, which will save up to 90% of CO2 emissions at the processing stage compared to buying electricity from the national grid.