Our Mission

The GSA is a non-profit industry association with 450 members from 33 countries including women’s groups, brands and retailers, suppliers, and NGOs. Through public-private partnerships, the GSA promotes industry sustainability, quality practices and standards, and demand for shea in food and cosmetics. 

Membership Principles

1. Promote growth of the industry

We commit to working together with all shea value chain stakeholders to promote growth of the industry in Africa and around the world. We support governments with information and technical support in designing strategies to maximize the value added and jobs created by the shea industry. We commit to continuous improvement in our activities and impacts.

2. Best international business practices

GSA members commit to building trust and respect throughout the supply chain. Members will practice fair business trade as it is generally understood today. Members will avoid any price collusion or appearance thereof and encourage free and fair competition across the industry (see annex below). We commit to respect all international anti-cartel and competition laws. Members commit to honouring contracts and agreements and to timely delivery and payment.

3. Dispute and complaint resolution

Members agree to investigate any complaints fairly and openly, and to follow the GSA Dispute Resolution Process (see annex below).

4. Good corporate governance

Members commit to complying with the laws of our countries and relevant international standards. We aim to facilitate the growth our members’ businesses by encouraging them to apply the principles of integrity and good corporate governance. We commit to good practice in financial management and to business integrity.

5. Improve quality

We commit to improving the quality shea nuts produced by the pickers across the shea zone, and will share best practices and new technologies to improve the quality of shea products in an effort to provide excellent value to customers and consumers.

6. Pay fair prices

We commit to ensuring that firms pay pickers the best commercially viable price for their products and reward better quality products.

7. Communication

We commit to communicating this Code of Practice throughout our organisations and to external partners. Members agree not to make any misleading or unsubstantiated claims about their activities or their involvement with GSA. External communications are evidence-based and consistent.

8. Transparency

Members act responsibly and are transparent in their engagement with GSA. Members report annually to the GSA Secretariat in a manner agreed by the GSA including on their activities pursuant to GSA membership.

9. Confidentiality

All individual business information of members and stakeholders remains confidential. Aggregated statistics will be compiled however to monitor and track industry growth and value addition.

10. Collaboration and participation

Members agree to play an active role in GSA as far as their resources allow through actively sharing their knowledge and expertise with GSA and other members, participating in collaborative projects, providing training and technical assistance and playing an active role in the GSA Annual Conference. Members use the resources provided by the GSA to maintain an up-to-date knowledge on the state of the shea industry. Members provide the GSA Secretariat with feedback on the services it provides.

11. Payment of fees

Members agree to pay membership fees in a timely manner.