mystery full of glitter in the toothpaste should awaken clean in the Smallest of the joy of the teeth, Shine, particles, in creams, face care luxurious appear. It is the Mineral Mica (engl. for mica), which brings the products to the Glitter of a glamorous commodity with a dark flip side: often it is produced in countries such as India illegal mining of children. Up to 20,000 minors working according to Terre des hommes Netherlands for the removal. The number of unreported cases is high. A recently published report in the U.S. magazine “Refinery29” shows how even small children crawling heavily Laden from the narrow tunnels. Many of them toil every day. They hurt themselves, suffer from respiratory diseases and many have already lost friends in the mines in mass, you buried it under.

The buyer of the Micas? Among other things, a big cosmetics companies. Also in the assortment of the Swiss retailers Mica appears. Both in foreign as well as in-house brands. For example in Sephora-Rouge Manor, in Nars-eyeshadow in globe, the Natura line-day cream “Perfect complexion” in Coop or in some tooth pastes at Migros, for example, in the “Colgate Smiles” for children.

it Is therefore possible that also in our everyday products glitter dust from children’s work? Yes, say the aid organization Terre des hommes Switzerland and the non-governmental organization (NGO) Public Eye.

supply chain to trace is almost impossible

“The risk to buy unwanted products associated with child labour is very high,” says Oliver Classen, spokesman of the Public Eye, “the Situation is untenable.” Richard Geer, head of communication at Terre des hommes, Switzerland: “studies of Terre des hommes Netherlands has shown that most of the mines are officially. The recovered Mica is picked up by middlemen, and with that of other mines mixed in.”

Thus it is almost impossible for the supply chain to trace and exclude the possibility that children have worked for the glittering dust.

The retailers refer to their policies and behavior codes, which would be monitored by child labor practices and their enforcement are regularly and strictly. Nevertheless, Migros, and its subsidiary globe to leave in unison announced that they wanted to search the exchange with the brand’s producers: “we are concerned and are in no way acceptable.”

suppliers will need to write guidelines to adhere to

Manor, you reserve the right, in principle, to terminate the cooperation with a certain supplier, if the detection of the movement against ethical Standards. The suppliers are obliged to deliver the goods, “which is produced by means of exploitative child labour”. In Coop, where you have “small amounts of Mica” for the own brands We! and the Natura line is used, it refers to the fact that the suppliers ‘ compliance with the guidelines was expected. You agree, therefore, to be ethical, fair working conditions, without child labour, to comply with what will reviewed on a regular basis. “In addition, we conduct our own checks,” says Coop.

According to the “Refinery29”-Reportage of various international companies like L’oréal or Estée Lauder part of the “Responsible Mica Initiative”. The goal is to solve the problems of the Mica-procurement to 2022.

Which of the retailers mentioned directives were, in General, good tools to put to end child labour, says Terre-des-hommes-speaker Geer. But: “you are no guarantee.” The Initiative was a good start, the challenges will, however, need large: “a project of time. The companies are looking for. That’s why you can’t buy the products with Mica, even without a bad feeling.”

Synthetic replacement products.

The best is to avoid using products with Mica, also emphasizes Oliver Classen of the Public Eye.

Who would like to sparkle, however, could resort to synthetic substitutes – best without plastic. The two NGO representatives will advocate for the Public Eye-sponsored group responsibility Initiative. The suggestion reaches 2020 to a vote and requires that Swiss companies should also be used for violations of environmental and ethical standards abroad held liable.

The Civil reject the template. They fear a weakening of the Swiss business location.