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History

The FairWild Foundation was founded in 2008 and is responsible for the quality and implementation of a unified standard and certification system that includes ecological as well as social aspects.

Development of ecological aspects

In order to ensure sustainability in the wild collection system, thus guaranteeing a constant and reliable supply of raw materials to industry and traders, the International Standard for Sustainable Wild Collection of Medicinal and Aromatic Plants (ISSC-MAP) was developed between 2001 and 2006. It defines guidelines and provides tools to collectors, producers and decision makers for the planning and implementation of a sustainable resource management system based on the Good Agricultural and Collection Practices (GACP).

The development of this standard (ISSC-MAP) was supported by the German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (BfN)TRAFFICWWF, and IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature).

Development of social aspects

Accountability and Fair Trade have become important indicators to select business partners in the global market place. There are a number of approaches and label schemes available; however, these are not very appropriate for most wild-collected products. 

A standard was developed based on the Fair Trade principles and ILO Standards and the system was adapted on a worldwide approach, not based on plant species and market prices, but on cost calculation and a systematic approach. 

The development of the Fair Trade standard was initiated by SIPPO (the Swiss Import Promotion Programme) in cooperation with Forum Essenzia e.V. and IMO (Institute for Marketecology).

Joining of the two initiatives

These two initiatives joined together to build the FairWild Standard since ecological, social and economical aspects are intertwined and such a system can only be successful if all aspects are treated as being equally important.

The FairWild Standard version 2.0 was published in August 2010, and combines all essential elements of the two original Standards. It draws upon experiences and lessons learned through practical application of the Standard in the field.

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