FAIR TRADE AND CULTURE FOLLOWING THE ORGANIC SYSTEM
VACPA’s strategic relationships with its customers, employees, and suppliers are based on the core values of solidarity, transparency, fairness, and citizenship. As quality, food safety and sustainable development start in orchards, the company has committed itself over the past decade to a plan aimed at maintaining its involvement upstream from the dates sector and guaranteeing a framework of partnerships with its farmer suppliers.
This involvement comes with a vision that can be summarized as follows:
- Treat its farmer suppliers with fairness and respect by allowing them to benefit from the fruits of their work.
- Commit to their support by assisting them technically and sharing with them any risks because of any climate hazards and others.
- Be a company at the service of sustainable development especially in the areas of date production.
To implement this vision, the company has set up a program called the PASA (Supply Improvement Program); its main objective is creating a partnership with the dateproducers. The results so far are very encouraging:
- 148 producers joined the PASA program.
- Creationof a group of producers of 148 members called “Hazoua Palm”.
- Creation of an agronomic department within VACPA to assist and superviseproducers who are members of PASA.
After a few years of good agricultural practices, the company submitted the group’sapplication to be certified according to the organic farming system. “Hazoua Palm”was indeed certified organic in 2006. Today, this certification complies with the EEC,US NOP and Bio Suisse regulations. All certification and audit costs have been fullycovered by Boudjebel SA VACPA.
At the same time, Hazoua Palm Group was certified “fair trade”. A social fund hasbeen created within the group to help farmers and their families. This fund is financedby VACPA but also through the premiums attached to Fair Trade certification. HazouaPALM is also certified “Globalgap”.
A team of several executives and senior technicians, leading “PASA”, provides thegroup with technical assistance and assists members in the management ofcertification systems.