The shea tree is an endemic natural resource in Africa mainly known for its cosmetic properties. Yet it is the food industry that consumes the most processed shea butter by refining it industrially out of African countries. The shea tree resources that could contribute to guaranteeing food sovereignty in the 17 producing African countries are mostly exported as almond (70% in Benin). The shea almond unlike industrial marketing discourse is rarely processed locally. Worse, most companies ignore its applications in the food industry
Those facts reduce the opportunity for women in rural areas of Africa who live from this resource to develop local opportunities through their traditional knowledge and know-how and increasingly reduce the availability of the shea tree resources to local communities up to natural shea tree extinction in some areas.
It is in this context and following a graduation thesis on the development strategies for shea value chains Karethic was born.
Karethic mission is to empower women producers in the shea industry by promoting their know-how and the quality of their product, relocating shea butter production and diversifying the product made from the shea tree through social and technical innovation sourced from women experiences and african rural areas specificities.