The Global Shea Alliance (GSA) today launched ‘Shea More Love’ to raise awareness about the Action for Shea Parklands (ASP) – a sustainability initiative that aims to grow 10 million trees, restore 4 million hectares of parklands, sequester 882,000 tonnes of CO2 carbon, and train 250,000 people on sustainable parkland management.
‘Shea More Love’ will not only raise awareness about ASP but also help drive donations to the Parkland Restoration Fund (PRF), which will support the achievement of ASP goals by raising US$65.5million over 10 years.
“Launching ‘Shea More Love’ on the International Day of Rural Women helps us bring to light the tremendous impact shea has on 16 million rural African women who rely on the shea parklands as a primary source of income,” said Simballa Sylla, president of GSA.
“We are working with partners across the globe to highlight the urgency to take action now in order to ensure the livelihoods of millions of women and their communities, while protecting the African landscape. The survival of shea trees is critical to reversing some of the pressing climate challenges faced in this region
“Every year, West Africa loses approximately eight million trees due to tree removal for firewood, pressure from increasing populations, loss of fallows, and clearing land for commercial agriculture. GSA reports that if the industry does not take action now, shea supply may not meet demand by 2044 – meaning the shea harvest will no longer meet production needs for food, cosmetics and pharmaceuticals.
“As a woman shea collector, I am pleased to serve on the committee. To see this campaign launch gives me hope that rural women in the industry, the parklands and the generation to come have a more resilient future,” said Sita Coulibaly, Women Collector Representative on the PRF board. “These parklands we are trying to save have seen me through phases of my life. In the spirit of regeneration, I encourage everyone to ‘Shea More Love’”.
The Action for Shea Parklands (ASP) is part of GSA’s sustainability programme aimed at mobilising the industry to grow 10 million trees over the next 10 years in response to the declining tree population. Across West Africa, shea tree populations are increasingly on the decline due to commercial agriculture, tree removal for charcoal, reduced fallows and climate change. Through ASP, the GSA and its members aim to protect the existing stock of shea trees and plant new ones to ensure sustainability of the shea industry.
The Parkland Restoration Fund (PRF) is the established funding mechanism to achieve the ASP objectives. The PRF is funded through GSA member donations, private individual donation, government and donor contributions, as well as Carbon sales and other revenues related to complementary business activities.
The PRF funds will be managed by the PRF Board and Management Team, and invested through an annual grant programme. GSA will solicit, evaluate, distribute, support and monitor projects which positively impact the lives of rural women farmers and their communities.
The Global Shea Alliance (GSA) is a non-profit industry association with 706 members from 36 countries – including women collectors and processors, brands and retailers, ingredient suppliers, civil society, research institutions and policymakers. Through public-private partnerships, the GSA promotes industry sustainability, quality practices and standards, and the demand for shea in food and cosmetics.