Social and Environmental Sustainability
Arte Indio employs one part-time and one temporary employee, interns as well as more temporary personnel for special events. Payment is made accordingly to the pay scale of the wholesale and foreign trade. The domestic work has a positive effect. Solely an additional social security exceeding the standard rate could further improve the situation of the employees. Especially the ecological and environmental efforts are outstanding, especially for a comparably small company. Abroad, the company worked on a positive development in a structured manner. This way, producers are being actively supported to e.g. merge to cooperatives to optimize their work and to increase sales opportunities. In addition a subsidiary company in Lima was established, which is responsible for the support of the producers as well as the trade procedures on-site. These measures are very comprehensive and always consider local circumstances, which results in a high degree of self-determination for the producers. Solely the ecological part could still be improved; opportunities for improvement should preferably be implemented soon. Arte Indio actively supports the local producers with their political interests, e.g. through the cooperation with the large association of artisans (CIAP) in Peru.
The business policy is transparent; business reports have been disclosed. The annual report, which is send to all customers, provides detailed and well-balanced information on the business policy and activities of Arte Indio. In future, these information will also be provided on the website. With regards to the selection of direct trading partners only small criticism can be made. The example calculation provided should be more detailed and based on specific products.
Arte Indio is an owner-operated sole proprietorship. Decisions are being made during meetings with all persons involved; this co-determination is also included in writing in the contracts of employment. Every week, there is a voting for upcoming decisions with the person responsible in Lima, via e-mail or phone. There is no formal way of co-determination for world shops, however it is being exercised. Both, in Germany as well as abroad, a strong wish for networking can be seen, it is being comprehensively aspired and exercised.
Not for Profit
The legal form allows privatization of profit through personal drawings, in the last three years however, this has not been made use of. Generated profits have been invested in office equipment, renovations and merchandise purchases. In 2008, for the first time, Arte Indio made donations to several different projects. For the future, Arte Indio plans to invest in the extension of the online shop and the modernization of the storage rooms. To protect investments in merchandise purchases (incl. advance financing), savings exist.
Informational and Educational Work
The informational and educational work is focused on students and adults and consumers respectively. Arte Indio wants to give an understanding of the living conditions in South America and the concerns of Fair Trade as well as provide information on music and musical instruments of South America in particular. A matter of personal importance is to enable employees of world shops to professionally sell the musical instruments and inform customers on the (musical) culture South Americas. In addition, world shops are being actively supported during events and campaigns. This part takes up about half the working time, which, for such a small firm, is very considerably. Information on the products and producers are being provided in the form of flyers as well as on the website (for world shops additionally several written information exist), as slide shows or lendable exhibition. The material is being updated frequently.
The producers are being supported, reviewed and consulted through personal visits of a company representative twice a year. In addition, the subsidiary company in Lima is responsible for the contact with the producers. The cooperation with the producers is designed to be long-term oriented. The management is making decisions on entering or accepting new trade relations. A reminder is only send about the establishment of their own transparent list of criteria on how to choose trading partners. So far the termination of trade relations has not been necessary and would only occur in exceptional cases. A 100 % advance financing free of interest is offered and is being used by all trading partners.
Arte Indio is a very small-sized organization, which has developed magnificently in recent years. This can be seen especially in their work abroad through the cooperation with trading partners, as a subsidiary company has been established to specifically coordinate the work in Peru. The work of Arte Indio is strongly focused on the needs of the people in Peru and the local circumstances, without loosing sight of the existence of the company in Germany. An alignment of the corporate activities with the fair trade criteria of the world shops has noticeably happened.
The criteria social and environmental sustainability, democratic structures, not for profit and informational and educational work are consistent with the convention of the world shops. Small opportunities for improvement exist with the criteria transparency and continuity. The service for world shops can be identified as very good.
Arte Indio satisfies the “Convention of the World Shops – Criteria for the Fair Trade of the World Shops”.