Production of Bulgarian rose oil requires a massive amount of rose Damascena blossoms. All of them are hand-picked by workers who come at dusk. In recent years, there has been an insufficient amount of field workers. This is caused due to the constantly increasing number of Rose Damascena gardens. All of this leads to an increasing amount of children willing to work during rose harvest. Most of them are taken out of school and brought to the fields by their families. We take this matter very seriously and believe that children labor should not be exploited. Instead, they should stay at school and be able to grow gain knowledge and enjoy their childhood.
We are making constant efforts to stop child labor in the production of Bulgarian rose oil. To achieve this, we regularly remind our workers that children are not allowed on the fields. We ask them to keep their children in schools in order to have a brighter future. Our staff is monitoring for the age of field workers to ensure no child labor has been involved in the production of our Bulgarian rose oil.
safe work environment
We are looking after 140 hectares of Bulgarian Rose Damascena gardens. For this reason, the number of our field worker regularly exceeds 1000 people during peak season. To find this large amount of people, we have workers traveling from around the country to help us with the crop. Unfortunately, some of them are traveling in an unsafe condition at the back of a bus with no seat or seatbelt. This can be very dangerous for the passengers, especially if an accident occurs.Some of the ways we are trying to resolve this problem are by asking the travelers to come with cars instead. Additionally, we hire coach buses which help transport some of the workers in a safe way by providing a seat for each passenger.
During the rose oil production season, we offer higher payment to workers who are willing to settle in the village for the season. We help them find accommodation and provide assistance to make their stay safe. Besides the higher payment rate for rose blossoms, workers are stimulated by saving time and not traveling in unsafe conditions. Every year more than 300 of our rose pickers prefer to stay in the village for the rose oil season.
Besides the travel, working on the rose fields can be a tough job because temperatures can sometimes reach 40 degrees Celcius. For all of our workers, we provide fresh drinking water to cool down as well as medication if needed. Insect bites can cause serious trouble for some people, therefore we keep medication to help allergic reactions.
Rose picking is a costly and time-consuming labor. A large portion of the rose blossoms price is formed by it. Therefore, it directly reflects on the price of Bulgarian rose oil, concrete and absolute. It makes sense, that rose oil producers would be looking to pay less in order to achieve a lower cost of their product. However, we believe that if the price is not fair this will reflect on sustainability. Workers, who are paid unfairly often abandon field work and move to the cities or even abroad and never return. If this continues to happen, the problem with the insufficient rose pickers will be unavoidable.
As a reputable Bulgarian rose oil producer, we believe that we should think about the future. Rose Damascena oil has been produced for over 300 years in Bulgaria and hopefully, it will continue to. To create a more sustainable environment for our products, we pay a fair price to the field workers. This is achieved only through the help of our partners, who understand the problem and contribute for this. We would like to say a big Thank you to all of our partners and hopefully continue to improve the essential oil production environment.