Producer and Distributor of Unrefined, Handcrafted, Fair Trade Shea Butter. Chemical Free, No Parabens, All Natural.


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Agbanga Karite

Frequently Asked Questions

Unrefined Shea Butter FAQ

Is your shea butter refined?
No, our unrefined shea butter is handcrafted using traditional techniques that have been used in central Togo for thousands of years. No chemicals are used to extract or preserve our shea butter. See how our unrefined shea butter is made.

What color is your unrefined shea butter?
Our shea butter is an ivory, off-white color that varies slightly depending on the season.

Does your shea butter have an odor?
Our shea butter is unrefined, therefore it does have the characteristic nutty aroma of unrefined shea butter.

What is the texture of your unrefined shea butter?
Our unrefined shea butter has a smooth, creamy texture with absolutely no graininess.

Is your shea butter "pure"?
Yes, our unrefined shea butter is 100% pure. It has not been refined in any way nor have we added any preservatives or other additives.

Other Products FAQ

What is the difference between Virgin Coconut Oil and refined coconut oil?
Virgin Coconut Oil is unrefined and has not been stripped of any of its natural antioxidants through the refining process. Refined oils, including refined coconut oil, are stripped of natural antioxidants and are highly prone to free-radical generation. Free radicals damage skin cells and cause skin aging and cancer. The antioxidants in virgin coconut oil not only prevent free-radicals from forming in the oil, but also help protect against free-radicals that the skin is exposed to. In contrast, lotions and creams made from refined oils do not help protect against free-radicals in the environment, and may also expose the skin to additional free-radicals.

Is your African black soap in bars?
Our African black soap is in blocks or bricks, bars and liquid, but can easily by melted and molded into bars.

Customer Service FAQ

Do you provide samples?
Yes, we provide samples for serious inquiries only. Please call us at the number at the bottom of this page.

From where are your products shipped?
We ship from both Togo and our North American office in Washington State depending on destination and size of order. Orders under 5 metric tons to North America are generally shipped from Washington. Larger orders and orders to Europe, Africa, Australia, and Asia are shipped from Togo.

How soon will I receive my order?
For North American customers, small orders are shipped via UPS ground and larger orders are shipped via UPS Hundredweight, FedEx Express or Overnight Transportation. North American orders placed before 11 am PST are shipped the same or next business day. As soon as the carrier picks up the shipment, we provide you with a tracking number. For customers outside North America and any order over 5 metric tons, orders are shipped within two weeks at any time during the year. For cargo shipments, we have contracts with Maersk Sealand, Air France and Air Gabon (Intra-Africa shipments).

Is this operation a "scam"?
Not all African organizations are in the business of scamming. We are a credible, legitimate, and professional organization. We work hard to uphold a high standard of customer service.

Does buying from Agbanga Karite benefit "villagers"?
Agbanga Karite does more than benefit a "village" or "villagers." Purchasing from Agbanga Karite not only benefits the individuals that craft our unrefined shea butter and other virgin oils, but also their communities and Togo overall. First, the women who craft our oils and butters are paid fair, steady incomes regardless of whether we sell the products or not. Second, we allocate a percentage of our income to the communities where our products are produced. Third, the influx of capital into Togo provides an economic resource that helps local economies become self sufficient. Please see our members' page, income allocation, community projects and fair trade policies for more information.

How does Agbanga Karite differ from other shea butter suppliers?
We are a genuinely African-owned organization with our own shea butter processing centers in central and southern Togo. We have direct control over the production of our products, which ensures that quality is consistent. We differ from other African shea butter suppliers in that we maintain an office in the United States that handles all customer service and financial transactions. Please see our philosophy and about us pages for more information.

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