Fair Trade Manufacture in Cambodia
Samatoa Lotus Textiles is a small social enterprise dedicated to the ethical fashion mode in Cambodia. Samatoa Lotus Textiles is specialized in the production of a 100% natural silk, as well as in the tailoring of high quality silk garments. Samatoa Lotus Textiles is a pioneer of fair trade in Cambodia since 2003 aiming to improve living conditions of local weavers and tailors. Samatoa Lotus Textiles offers training of weaving, spinning and dressmaking to disadvantaged women and support them offering them a decent work. Samatoa Lotus Textiles has formed 160 women for careers in fashion, model making, weaving (textile design) and spinning since 2003.
These women from very precarious situation became renowned experts first approached in Cambodia and then quickly in Europe and the United States for their unique skills of pattern making, cutting, sewing silk clothing and for their know-how to weave the finest silk in the world (ref: Guide du routard, Lonely Planet, Heritage Watch, Fair-trade organizations, etc.).
Samatoa Lotus Textiles believes in fair trade as a key to real development, showing respect for men and their environment. Fair trade consists of a commitment on all those taking part: suppliers, producers, importers and distributors.
It is an alternative trade which guarantees the respect of different laws: non-discrimination, prohibition of children’s work, trade-union freedom, right for collective bargaining and prohibition of forced work.
Mulberry tree farming, silk unwinding purification, spinning and weaving are entirely accomplished following traditional Cambodian handcrafted techniques.
SAMATOA LOTUS TEXTILES FAIR TRADE COMMITMENTS
- The respect of environmental and social values: Minimum official salary, child labour prohibition, productivity bonus & legal holidays.
- Transparency: Samatoa Lotus Textiles guarantees a full transparency with regards to the finished product.
- A direct relationship: We aim at providing a direct trade relationship with its customers by limiting the number of middlemen.
- A fair price: That guarantees the producer’s true payment and the improvement of their living conditions.
FAIR TRADE CRITERIA
- Reduce, whenever possible, the middlemen between producers and customers.
- Use local potentials (available raw material and know-how).
- Diversify the production and its distribution channels in order to achieve autonomy.
- Guarantee a fair price (covering the production costs and allowing the setting up of social and economical programs) and transparency.
- Develop long-term partnerships.
- The right to negotiate: the manufacture is a participative organization, respecting freedom and speech and everyone’s opinion without any discrimination (democratic decision making).
- Eliminate child labor, except for educational or training purpose.
- Respect of social criteria: minimum wage, trade union rights, holidays, safety norms and gender equality must be respected, as well as fair retribution of workers.
- Health Care program: a part of profit, if available, will be used to create collective equipment for educative and health purposes.
- Non-discrimination: in all decisions concerning : hiring, work distribution, training, promotion, retribution, distribution of social advantages, discipline and the breach of work contract, the members of SAMATOA LOTUS TEXTILES are committed not to take in account: race, colour, gender, beliefs, religion, political opinion, ethnic ascendance, social origin.
- Trade union freedom: the workforce of Samatoa Lotus Textiles is allowed to found a trade union and to negotiate collectively all matters regarding work conditions. In this matter, they can elect representative, for a mandate of one year, renewable only once.
Samatoa Lotus Textiles aims toward respect of specific ecosystems, responsible use and conservation of natural resources.
Samatoa Lotus Textiles is a member of Artisans Association of Cambodia (AAC) which is member of World Fair Trade Organization (WFTO):