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Shea Butter Shouldn’t Stink

[POSTED ON: 19th February 2021]
Shea butter should not smell blog

Stop Stinky Shea!  You don’t want shea butter with a horrible smell and neither do your customers.  Learn more…

  1. Do you really need chemically refined shea?
  2. Why does shea butter stink?
  3. Preventing stinky shea
  4. How Baraka ensures consistent AAA quality

“Your shea butter smells nice”. I hear that so often. I run into many who have been using refined shea butter to get away from the rancid sort of smell that poorly made shea butter has.

Do You Really Need Chemically Refined Shea?

Baraka Shea Butter is ‘naturally refined’. The traditional process naturally removes moisture, getting the moisture content to the point where the final shea butter has a very long and stable shelf life, even in the hot conditions on the edge of the Sahara.

Many manufacturers and crafters who have tried Baraka Shea Butter after years of using refined have discovered they don’t need refined shea butter to make a good product. They just need good shea butter.

They have been amazed and relieved to discover they don’t need to use chemically refined shea butter, treated with bleach and hexanes to make consistently great products.

Raw, unrefined shea butter doesn't smell horrible
Raw, unrefined shea butter

After trying Baraka Shea Butter many have switched and are now able to provide their customers with a natural and healthy product made with pure, unrefined and handmade shea butter.

They love it when they realize they can make great products with raw, unrefined shea butter.

Why Does Shea Butter Stink?

Usually because it is poorly made. Made from poor quality shea nuts (seeds) and not finished properly to remove excess moisture. When this happens the shea butter will quickly begin to go rancid, developing a foul smell and often feeling a bit sticky and slimy to the touch.

Quality shea butter has a natural, nice smell
Quality shea butter takes care at every step. Baraka Shea Butter is made from specially selected premium shea nuts before it is carefully roasted and finished.

Unfortunately, there is a lot of poor shea butter on the market. I didn’t realize how accustomed people were to ‘stinky shea’ until we exhibited at a major show. We had plain, whipped shea for sampling, no scent, just whipped.

Over half the people who tried it commented that it smelt pleasant and natural. They asked what scent we had used and were astonished to learn that it was just the natural smell of well-made shea butter. And, even more astonished when we told them the sample was from year old shea butter.

Well made shea butter starts with good quality shea nuts, properly prepared, dried and stored. They are crushed, roasted properly, ground, whipped and prepared just so, taking the time and care necessary at each step. You can see an animated video of this process here.

Premium shea nuts
Shea Nuts

We actually did some research on ‘stinky shea’ and there seem to be two main reasons it happens.

  1. Women feel pressured to finish the shea quickly because they are not being paid a fair price and can’t afford the extra process time to get the moisture out.
  2. Companies don’t have consistent and effective quality control to catch and remove poor quality shea butter before it enters inventory.

Preventing Stinky Shea

I’m often asked how Baraka Shea Butter has 100% 5 star ratings on Google and Facebook and so many comments speaking of exceptional quality.

The bulk of the credit goes to the women who make it (see them in this video). They use age-old traditional techniques passed down through generations. They were taught by their mothers and grandmothers to make high-quality shea, because they were making it for their own use. No cutting corners. It was for their home and family. And it had to last through to the next shea season, in the heat of sub-Saharan Africa.

This results in premium shea butter with a naturally pleasant smell.

Raw shea butter with nice smell
From our hands to yours…
Packing high-quality shea butter
Every carton is hand-packed and inspected before it is ‘signed’ with the handprint of the lady who made it.

How Baraka Ensures Consistent AAA Quality

  1. We pay the women a premium price. They don’t feel economically pressured to quickly finish the batch. They know the importance of quality and that they are paid for it.
  2. Straining and filtering. The freshly made shea liquid is strained and filtered to remove any suspended solids and impurities to prevent them from accelerating deterioration of the final product.
  3. No anonymity. Baraka’s shea butter producers take pride in leaving their hand-print on the top of their cartons of shea and of having their Producer Registration Number written on the carton. They want people to know that they personally made it and made it with care to ensure quality.
  4. We hand inspect every carton. There is no random sampling. Every single carton of Baraka Shea Butter is hand inspected as it is packed. If any do not meet our standards the women is advised of it and told why and we simply don’t buy it.

But, at the end of the day, the bulk of the credit goes to the producers and to traditions developed over centuries. We don’t try to ‘improve’ on the traditional knowledge, and we pay fair prices so the women have time to make shea butter the way their mothers and grandmothers taught them.

Want to try it? You can order here. No Risk. 100% satisfaction guaranteed.

You might also be interested in:

Know Your Shea: find out what terms like raw, unrefined and organic really mean.

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4 thoughts on “Shea Butter Shouldn’t Stink

  1. I just got my first order. I only ordered 1 kg to try it out.I’m so happy with the quality. Next month I’ll definitely order 6kg.I give it 5 star

    1. Hi Louisa – thanks so much. The women who make Baraka Shea Butter do amazing work They love to get feedback like yours. Please let us know any way we can help and support you

    1. Hi James. Sorry to hear that. There really isn’t a way to remove the smell from bad shea butter.

      I checked and cannot see an order from you on our site so I am assuming you purchased it from somewhere else?

      If you purchased it from us please let me know your order number and I would be happy to replace it. The women who make Baraka Shea Butter do an amazing job on quality, but if you are using our product and unhappy in any way we will refund or replace.

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