WHAT WE LIKE
- Improved lives of Kenyan families against poverty.
- Aware and constant improvement of their impact on society and environment.
- Promotes the gift of joy through flowers, especially roses.
ENV 1★: Offers carbon offsetting with tree planting in Kenya
(About Sustainability Impact score)
Society-changing roses from Africa to Japan
When we think about flowers, AFRIKA ROSE is one of the brands that immediately comes to our minds. This is because the inspiring CEO, Ai Hagiuda, is tackling two issues on the social front and in two different countries. This social business is definitely worth putting on your list of gift shopping sources.
These fair trade roses are building healthy Kenyan communities
AFRIKA ROSE is a fair trade brand that imports Kenya’s high quality roses to Japan for sale. However, the motivation was not monetary-driven. Hagiuda was volunteering in Kenya, including building a school for children. But she realized that the underlying issue of poverty needs a more concrete solution. So Hagiuda decided to sell African roses in Japan to create an income source for rose farmers in Kenya, making sure the farmers were paid fairly for their roses. AFRIKA ROSE was then founded in 2013, and the first AFRIKA ROSE store opened in 2015.
Today, there are two AFRIKA ROSE stores in Tokyo, in Shibuya and Roppongi. The stores are supported by 2,000 rose farmers in Kenya, a tenfold increase in employment within a decade. This is the cycle that Hagiuda had envisioned, and more! There are free clinics and cafeterias at the farms which looks over the well-being of Kenyans. Even composting is conducted at the farms as a push for environmental
During the coronavirus pandemic, AFRIKA ROSE also introduced a carbon offsetting system, where every 5 yen donation during purchase will be given to a local Kenyan organization that plants trees. This is a climate action that AFRIKA ROSE implemented to address the transport costs of the roses from Africa.
Creating societal and environmental change in Japan
Creating a successful fair trade brand and improving lives outside of Japan is not the end for AFRIKA ROSE. This sustainable brand isi also making changes within Japanese society by participating in various social good activities.
One of the most notable initiatives is the Rose Ambassadors. Used to be called “AFRIKA ROSE Ambassadors,” the group dropped the keyword AFRIKA to bring attention to the role of ambassadors, to change the image of gifting roses. Gifting roses in Japan has the image as gifts for special occasions, and many males find it embarrassing to give them. The Ambassadors promote normalizing giving roses to bring joy to others. These Ambassadors, who are male, hold events to give out roses to single ladies, hand out roses to males to give to their accompanying partner, and even families and children in hospitals.
Constantly aware of their environmental impact, AFRIKA ROSE also recently implemented sustainable flower wrappers and flower pot. There materials are FSC certified, which certifies that the paper used is responsibly obtained or from recycled resources. AFRIKA ROSE is also aiming for 0% flower loss through a collaboration with flowercyclist RIN Inc.
What we would like to see
None at the moment.
(updated 3 Oct)
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