Our Argan Oil Origin
Known as "liquid gold" within the cosmetic industry due to its many beneficial properties, Argan Oil is the pure pride and joy of the native inhabitants of Morocco, the Berbers. Produced from the kernels found inside the argan nut, Argan Oil has gone from a natural, tribal ingredient to one of the most desired oils in the world due to its precious attributes. Here at Matia Natural, we use Argan oil in all our formulas.
Today we would like to share with you where our Argan Oil comes from and what it means to you and us.
Traditional Argan Oil Production
Argan trees are grown in Morocco on small and large plots of land that families have owned for generations. When the Argan fruits ripen in the summer (June / July), Berber women pick up the fruits, sun-dry them for a few days, remove the nut kernels, ground them by hand, and roast them later on firewood to finally ground them using a grindstone.
The achieved paste is then kneaded with water to extract the Oil. This traditional Argan Oil extracting process takes about 20 hours and requires approximately 100kg of Argan nut kernels to produce 1 litre of Oil. 
Women Empowerment - Argan Oil Cooperatives
In regions stricken by poverty and unemployment, where the only alternatives are livestock or migration, Argan Oil has always been the foremost opportunity to bring money. As the demand was not there until the 1990s, traditional Argan Oil Producing methods were sufficient. Everything changed when the international interest in Argan Oil began to increase, and export volumes grew.
Along with the worldwide interest in Argan Oil, the number of foreign investors rose. They came to Morocco seeking money, and, as a result, they introduced modern, cold-pressing plant machines far away from the Berber Argan forests in cities like Casablanca. Newly formed Argan Oil producing companies reduced the role of the women of the Berber communities down to suppliers of raw Argan nut kernels.
The entire process dramatically downgraded the local community profits from Argan Oil. This has motivated groups of women to create cooperatives to harness the natural wealth of their region and meet the surge in demand. In the early 2000s, the Moroccan state formed a partly-foreign-sustained agency named Projet Arganier to fund cooperatives. The economic success of the cooperatives has been accompanied by the social upliftment and improved status of women producing it.
Empowering Women in Morocco
At Matia Natural, we have our principles. We aim to deliver authentically ethical, natural and cruelty-free beauty products that work. We consistently demonstrate our commitment to the environment and sustainability to ensure that the cosmetics you buy are better for you, the planet and everyone around you.
We formulate our natural face and body care products only with natural ingredients. We use Argan Oil in all our formulas. Not only because it's "the liquid gold", and that it fits all types of skin because it's non-comedogenic, rich in antioxidants, vitamins and has fantastic anti-ageing properties. One of the main reasons is its origin.
By using Fair Trade, Ecocert and USDA-certified Argan Oil produced by the cooperative in the region of Agadir, we:
- support the women in that region by contributing to their financial independence. The salary earned from working in the Argan fields allows those women to send their children to schools and support their respective families;
- support a safe and sustainable community that promotes women's empowerment, equality, achievement and self-worth. The Argan cooperative offers free literacy classes to those women to teach them how to write and read;
- are confident that our natural face and body care products contain the finest fair trade Argan Oil in the world, extracted with the essential nutrients intact;
- do not compromise our standards; by working only with suppliers who meet our rigorous requirements, we can assure our clients that they get the best quality natural skincare.
This is where Matia Natural Argan Oil comes from:
Women Empowerment - Ecocert and USDA-certified cooperative in the region of Agadir
Argan Oil Sourcing - Our Challenges
In the past three years, the Argan Oil from the cooperative had known a tremendous price increase, approximately 40%, due to the challenging weather conditions, droughts, and the rise in seed prices. Even though Argan Oil is the main ingredient in all our formulations, we neither increased our product's price nor searched for an alternative source. Simply because contributing to empowering women in any region of the world is a genuine value that is part of who we are as a natural skincare brand.
The Origin of Argan Oil in Matia Natural Cosmetics - Summary
Argan Oil - a staple ingredient in every Matia Natural product is sourced directly from the cooperative in the Agadir, south Morocco region where the Argan trees originally grow. By supporting the empowerment of Moroccan women, we contribute to their ability to make strategic life choices, help them to get more control over their own life, including family decisions or expenditures and overcome structures that limit them in society.
We are very proud to be a part of the social upliftment of women extracting it. With this ethos, we can assure you that our responsibly sourced Argan Oil is of the highest quality, processed using the methods that allow for preserving the essential properties of this liquid gold.
By using Matia Natural natural skincare cosmetics, you not only support women's empowerment in Morocco but make a difference to the entire region. Every time you make a purchase, you care for the Moroccan Argan Oil industry's tradition, culture and sustainability.
 A successful Contribution to Empowerment of Women: Zoubida Charrouf at TEDxBarcelonaWomen." TEDx Talks, 2013.