Fresh Cargo - About Us
Fresh Cargo began life in 2009 and was founded by Rebecca Gray. Aged 24 she took out a loan for £15,000, bought a ticket to France and teamed up with Raphael, a pioneer in recycled fashion bags.
Her idea was simple, make fashion fun, make it fair - alongside creating a positive change in people’s lives. Rebecca wanted to develop people’s skills so the products were more durable, fashionable and priced at high street prices, so they were inclusive for customers.
In 2011, Rebecca decided to create a simple charter so both customers and suppliers understand what the company wished to create for the future.
Fresh Cargo will:
- Create positive change through fairness
- Develop long term sustainable relationships
- Build a platform to educate people in fair trade
- Support both UK and international social enterprises
- Offer, fun, inclusive, high quality fashionable products - always!
- No green gestures or green washing. No selling out, no high and mighty attitudes, just plain old fairness and common sense.
Fairness runs through the Fresh Cargo business and we try to create a balance in the projects we donates to or invest in. This year Fresh Cargo has donated to the Ryan Lee Trust supporting terminally ill children, the RSPCA Freedom run by funding flights to South Africa so RSPCA worker and runner Emma Timmis can raise £15,000 (Please note all major airlines declined to offer a free seat), regular donations to Greenpeace as well as being an active member.
As we grow, your custom helps us invest into projects that will make a real difference to people and animals in the UK, alongside our overseas projects. It’s about creating balance.
Our Teams Around The World
Fresh Cargo would never have happened without the belief, support and hard work from our teams around the world. So, it seems only fair that I tell you a little about our Fresh Cargo family, what they do and how we help them to improve their lives.
We work with three teams in Kenya, a group in the Nairobi slums who make our wire jewelllery, a group who make our recycled tyre flip flops, and a final group who make our recycled paper jewellery.
All teams are visited regularly by the Fresh Cargo team, who oversee production and quality control. We have funded some of the teams set up, with one team now moving into a larger premises as we have helped them grow.
‘Rubbish Bags’ was our first project that launched our company. The project employs people in Cebu, a beautiful part of The Philippines. Like many scenic places in the world there is also a great deal of poverty and this project supports the welfare of Cebu families with fair wages, medical cover and one month’s salary bonus at Christmas.
The essence of the project is to take re-cycled juice cartons and convert them into fun, sexy everyday bags. Stephane and Raphael run our teams and work on new designs each season, both are French and add, as you would expect, a little French flair to the product.
Another of our operations creates jewellery and is supported by Fresh Cargo. The operation ensures the work is varied, fun and of course, most importantly, safe and clean. The workers have fair wages and medical cover.
Our goal is not just about creating fair trade teams but making sure the work is interesting. Paying minority groups fairly is only the beginning. Growing minds and improving their social welfare outside of work is also important to us. That is why we call it a family, our Fresh Cargo family.
Our Indonesian team have worked with us since we first started in 2009. Luke McGibney, our co-founder, works on designing recycled paper homeware, while Natalia co-ordinates the team in production in Indonesia.
Special attention is focused on quality control, our products are not only different and recycled but tested rigorously to ensure they last. A high majority of workers are female and Indonesian people have a natural ability towards handicraft, making this project perfect for the team.