By  on April 23, 2010

Mark, Avon Products Inc.’s beauty brand tailored for young women, aims to bottle its message of empowerment with the upcoming Mark Fair Trade Body Collection.

The four-item range sources ingredients from Fair Trade farmers across the globe, including vanilla from India, cocoa butter from Peru and chamomile from Egypt. Each product is certified by TransFair USA, a nonprofit organization and the only independent, third-party certifier of Fair Trade products in the U.S.

“Beyond offering products that are on trend, Mark has a mission of social responsibility and empowerment. We feel that we have an obligation to do good,” said Claudia Poccia, global president, Mark. “The issue of sustainability is important to our girls, but we have to do it in a way that makes sense for the brand.”

The collection — marketed with the tag line Body Care That Cares — will make its debut in August magalogues, or Mark product brochures, and be featured at Meetmark.com and on representatives’ personal e-boutiques.

Fair Trade certification is a market-based model of international trade that includes a network of over one-million farmers and farm workers in 58 developing countries across Africa, Asia and Latin America, according to the organization.

Fair Trade’s efforts have been largely focused on food, but the organization began developing a category for beauty over the last 18 months, said Maya Spaull, senior manager, new category development, TransFair USA. The organization is working to build its list of certified ingredients, which now includes shea and cocoa butters, olive oil, honey, herb extracts and vanilla.

“We are very excited that Mark is leading the charge to bring Fair Trade products to the beauty industry with this new body care line,” said Spaull. “We all have a common goal of supporting women with Free Trade. To feel that thread connecting us has been really exciting and moving.”

Gail Boye, Mark’s vice president of global product development, beauty and fashion, noted that women make up the majority of the workforce in agricultural, hired-labor sectors. “TransFair empowers farmers, their families and their communities. We knew it would resonate with the Mark girl. It’s truly a perfect fit.”

Products in the collection include Fresh Approach Hydrating Body Cleanser, formulated with Fair Trade honey; Do The Right Thing Smooth Body Lotion SPF 15, featuring honey and cocoa butter; Relief Effort Total Comfort Body Cream, made with cocoa butter, olive oil and chamomile, and The Big Fix 15-in-1 Big Benefits Lip Balm with cocoa butter, olive oil and vanilla. The products are priced between $10 and $14, at a slight premium to Mark body care items.

“This is not a one-off,” said Poccia of the collection. “This is a first step for us.”

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