Between 1990 and 2005, 17% of Guatemala’s rainforests have been cleared to make way for palm oil plantations and cattle farming. These monocultures have drained the country’s soil of nutrients and resulted in eroded land and loss of biodiversity. There’s a simple solution to starting to fix these issues: protect the land that has not yet been claimed by palm oil and cattle farmers, and use it to re-establish local plants that could restore its vitality. The Sustainable Lush Fund (or SLush Fund), run by the natural beauty company Lush, invests in agricultural projects around the world that both help renew local economies and land, and provides a supply chain from which Lush can source for its products. To date, the SLush Fund, which the company funds by setting aside 2% of what it spends on raw materials and packaging, has invested $5.1 million in community agriculture projects across 21 countries. Doing so “gives our buyers the opportunity to seek out positive, empowering relationships with growers, while they maintain sustainable practices and create fair wages and working conditions for their workers,” according to the Fund’s site. [Photo: Lush] Guatemala, says SLush Fund manager Gavin Hollett, was an ideal place […]

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