On Thursday Bentonville based retail giant Walmart will introduce a line of products from small, women-owned businesses on its website walmart.com called “Women Owned”. This is the latest push from the retailer to position itself as a leader in women’s economic empowerment. More than 200 items, from coffee beans to jewelry. iPad cases to coffee beans and apparel, will be merchandised online in the “Empowering Women Together” section of Walmart.com. The new section of its site will be promotes on its main page however for now, the products will not be available in stores.
Each product will be marked with the new “Women Owned” logo that signifies women-owned companies make the products. The logo, inspired by the gender equity movement and the action to support women in business, will join the collection of other value-driven marks.
The new marking logo, developed by Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC), WEConnect International and Walmart, joins the range of signs that inform the consumers on various properties of the product related to health, social or ethical standards—they say if it’s Fairtrade, gluten-free, veg, kosher, Made in America and more. This new labeling is the first of its kind indicating the gender-related origin.
The products currently come from nine countries including Cambodia, Haiti and the United States and include a $9.88 Women’s Bean Project soup mix and cornbread mix gift set and a $20 dress from the Rwandan women’s company Gahaya Links.
The women’s items will be part of the “Store for Good,” a project Walmart.com is working on for products that do good for others, for consumers or for the environment. Future goods may include eco-friendly items and healthier food, it said.
WalMart’s partners in the Empowering Women Together project include Global Goods Partners and Full Circle Exchange, non-profit organizations that sell products made by women.