In my efforts to create a business of substance I have tried to ensure that Etikora follows a sustainable, ethical programme in all that it does. This includes how we treat our customers, our brand partners (our suppliers) and ourselves.
More than just another ‘green’ shopping experience, we have taken a holistic approach and tried to embrace as many aspects of life as we can in which to create lifestyle choices. Along this path we have found that there are some things inside our control, some things that are jointly controlled and some things completely outside our control.
By shopping through Etikora, you become the owner of a product that will in some way enhance and improve your life, be it a sustainable cleaning product, a natural beauty product, some tasty organic food or a lovely holiday.
At the same time, it will bring benefits to small businesses, lone artisans, community and women’s groups. It will be part of the world-wide movement to live in a more sustainable way and thus help to save our endangered planet.
Who We Work With
Inside our control is the way we select our brand partners, and this is adequately covered on the website under ‘How We Select Our Brand Partners’. We have recently linked up with an American corporation with a similar MO. This will give us a much wider supplier base and greater product variety. We believe in ‘aid through commerce’ as we work with single artists, a group of artisans or a community project. Your purchase brings about great awareness and understanding through cultural exchanges and much needed financial assistance.
Working Together With Local Artisans
Jointly controlled are the suitability and quality of products and services. We have a huge say over the price to the customer with both parties taking a fair and reasonable profit. In many cases the artisan profit gets ploughed back to underprivileged individuals, community groups and the environment. At the same time, this improves our service to our customers.
Unfortunately, outside our control are shipping costs and the efficiency of any third parties involved e.g., quality of the delivery service, VAT and import duty.
Why Is Shipping So Expensive to the UK?
Sending items from abroad is not cheap and costs are rising all the time due to factors such as rising fuel costs and labour shortages.
The recent reason for this increase is COVID-19. The pandemic destroyed the global supply chain and the recent rise in shipping prices is a direct reflection of that. Shipping container movement ground to a halt. There were around 180 million containers and all of them were in the wrong place. This then caused shipping delays. During the pandemic, people were buying less, industries reduced production. As pandemic restrictions were lifted, demand increased, and businesses are trying to get back to pre-covid levels.
When Ever Given got stuck in the Suez Canal, it blocked the waterway for a week. 12% of global trade moves through this Canal and it cost a $2.2 – $3.9 billion in international trade. This incident also is responsible for an increase in freight prices as shipping companies claw back losses.
Carriers are raising prices to deal with increased costs such as higher fuel prices, scarcity of labour at ports which raise the cost of unloading cargo. It has had a domino effect.
Together with our brand partners, we are very conscious of this. We see these costs as part of the commitment made by our customers to obtain products of quality, durability and value and helping those trying hard to make a living. We do hope that you will be tolerant and understanding and not blame us or the artisans.
Why is My Product More Expensive Than I Think It Should Be?
Because your product is usually handmade and not massed produced it could cost more. In addition, you might have to pay somewhat daunting shipping costs and taxes beyond our control.
We ask that you take all this into account and that by making this purchase and accepting the good and the not so good aspects you are contributing in so many ways towards a better future for all of us.
New Brand Partners (Our Suppliers)
A final word about our quest to bring you authentic, traditional, and sustainable products from around the world. This is a two-way flow. We have our scouts across the globe seeking out new and innovative works of art and cultural artifacts. At the same time, small producers and ‘cottage industries’ are finding us through word of mouth and social media.
Do you know of any promising ‘start-ups’ or local community groups producing interesting and authentic items? If they are seeking a wider market for their wares then please do pass on our details so they can get in touch with us.
We have firm principles, strong determination and an overall passion to bring a wide variety of ethical products and services to your door. Etikora tries to promote a fairer and more sustainable way of selling and doing business both internally and externally. We truly hope we can count on you to support our efforts.
There’s more to Etikora than greets the eye.