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Answers from Foliumize

Frequently asked questions

Foliumize, concept & Partners

Foliumize, how does it work?


Foliumize links social and ecological projects, artists and You. Any artwork print offered by Foliumize helps funding the planting of a tree and the clearing of invasive plant species. The artist, who is a stakeholder in the project, will also be paid, unless he or she decides to donate all or part of his income to the reforestation project. You will receive at home (or you can directly send a gift) artworks you have ordered and will be able to follow the progress of the project you are supporting via our platform. Finally, our commitment is to guarantee and inform you about : (1) the good management of the funding entrusted by verifying the quality of the reforestation services (site preparation, fight against invasive plant species, planting of young trees and monitoring) and (2) compliance with the criteria for employing local workers; and (3) fair remuneration for actors and actresses revolving around Foliumize.




When will the funded tree be planted?


The best time to plant a tree needs to be determined in accordance with nature's cycle. The rainy season and / or winter are, depending on the project, the best time to ensure sufficient humidity for the young plants during the first months of development of their root systems. For example, the forest restoration project in South Africa chooses to plant the seedlings during the southern winter (June to August), the latter being relatively mild because the ground is not subject to frost.




How do you ensure that trees are going to be planted?


- Establishing a privileged relationship with the project, the teams and the natural environment This relationship is a prerequisite for the choice and evaluation of the project. Despite doing this, nothing will replace the fact that we must be on the ground regularly to meet them, to listen to them but above all while maintaining independence in the evaluation of tree planting. - Implementation of adapted methods

  • on-site visit carried out by Foliumize or by an independent professional from the forestry sector;
  • follow-up questionnaire to ensure the survival of the trees planted and thus attesting to the quality of the methods in place. Quantitative criteria such as, for example, counting the planted species diversity, the clearing area of invasive species and also qualitative criteria;
  • pluriannual monitoring plan of the various reforestation programs in order to estimate, for example, the survival rate of trees, their growth, but also beneficial effects on biodiversity (appearance of endemic plants, increase in local fauna due to the restoration of their habitat, etc. );
  • staggered payments in three stages: ⅓ at the time of site preparation and clearing of invasive species; ⅓ during the planting phase; ⅓ when the planting phase is over and the final evaluation is positive as to the survival of the young trees.
The section "Project selection and monitoring" details further these follow-up phases.
- Applying our experience and expertise in field of monitoring Our professional experience before Foliumize was partly centered around this notion of monitoring. Of course, we applied it to the financial sector, but the principles and experience acquired are assets that we transpose to the field of reforestation in order to guarantee the success of this project. For us, these control tools must be adapted to the project, used wisely and implemented independently.
Katharina, in addition to the technical expertise she acquired in the field of auditing, has also developed a strong experience of due diligence allowing the rigorous selection of business partners.
Romain was notably in charge of creating and implementing (1) risk management policies, (2) qualitative and quantitative monitoring tools on third parties, and (3) monitoring the evolution of indicators.




What is your income distribution ?


One of our core values is transparency. It seems normal that you know how the income from the purchase you made will be used. Indeed, as a consumer of an object with a social and environmental vocation, you have the right to know what will be the impact of your financing.
Today, far too few companies dare this transparency, particularly in the field of tree planting and ecosystem restoration. The responsible business model that we embody chooses to demonstrate that it is possible, if not desirable, to share this distribution of income.
Discover the provisional distribution of our income
For the moment, this distribution is provisional, therefore an annual review will be carried out and published.




Why are you clearing invasive species?


What are they? An invasive specie (or invasive alien specie) is a specie introduced, intentionally or accidentally, by human being outside of its natural range. Their presence and spreading threat ecosystems, habitats or native species with negative ecological and / or economic and / or health consequences.
In South Africa, these species are for example the Australian acacia or the common eucalyptus, emblem of Tasmania. Why clearing them? In South Africa, these invasive species are responsible, although they are not the only ones, for (1) soil erosion, (2) water scarcity for endemic species, (3) decrease in biodiversity and (4) increased risk of wildfires because they are inherently more flammable than native trees. In addition, (4) invasive species proliferate out of control, especially in the absence of ruminant mammals grazing them and (5) their rapid growth (also explaining the reason for their importation) stifles endemic vegetation.
According to the Centre de Ressources des Espèces Exotiques Envahissantes these alien species “[...] are recognized as one of the main causes of the erosion of global biodiversity [...] Thus, they constitute the third pressure weighing on endangered species globally, after habitat destruction and species overexploitation. ”
In accordance with the World Red List of the IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) dating from 2020, threats to global biodiversity, all species combined, amount to 27% of the species recorded. For example, this concerns 14% of birds, 33% of amphibians, 19% of insects, 18% of reptiles, 22% of land mammals and 40% of plants. (link to IUCN data).




Why does Foliumize make little reference to CO2?


Concretely, our ambition is to go beyond the simple CO2 calculator that is often put forward. Planting a tree with the intention of meeting a CO2 objective does not have the happy and automatic consequence of providing key spaces for biodiversity, promoting water cycles and soil conservation. However, this is the erroneous vision that we are often presented with: once the CO2 box checked, the rest will necessarily follow. This is not that simple. It is obviously easier to sell a figure expressed in tonnes of CO2 and to summarize in one line the current ecological and environmental problems. Foliumize does not deny the reality around CO2 and the fact that forests represent carbon sinks for the planet (second after the oceans) and the simplifying virtues of CO2 are undeniable for awareness, but these should not hide other realities and issues. CO2 should not hide other challenges faced by the forest ... and this is what Foliumize wants to highlight.




Why not focusing on the quantity of trees to plant?


Of course, Foliumize wants to allow numerous trees to be planted, but not at any cost.
We give more importance to the virtuous act of putting a tree in the ground and the value of the work done respectfully rather than the quantity of trees planted. A frantic race for quantity is often synonymous with monoculture, sometimes with fast-growing non-endemic species, industrialists ultimately exploiting trees, exploiting low-cost labor, or use of heavy machinery degrading the land and compacting the soil.
By essence, this is just not the same niche that Foliumize has chosen. We do not deny the need to plant trees in order to use them as construction material, for example. We do not partner with private forestry industries as we suspect that under the guise of carbon offsetting, they should not sell a tree that they would have planted anyway and that they will exploit financially by felling it down. Foliumize favors the qualitative manner by which a tree is planted, the impact on the soil by promoting the diversity of species planted and the sustainability of the tree. At the end of its life cycle, a dead tree becomes a shelter for certain animal or plant species and when it decomposes enriches the soil with nutrients. Neither more nor less than what nature has been doing for millions of years.




What do you mean by fair compensation?


It is one of the social aspects of our project to allow project managers and tree planters to be able to make a decent living from their work, especially if what they do is an essential activity for our common future. As a measure of objectivity on the concept and application of fair compensation, we follow the recommendations advocated by the Global Living Wage Coalition. According to this organization, a living wage is defined as follows: “ The remuneration received for a standard working week by a worker in a given location sufficient to provide a decent standard of living for the worker and his family. Elements of a decent standard of living include food, water, shelter, education, health care, transport, clothing and other basic needs, including support for unforeseen events. This definition incorporates the main ideas found in over 60 descriptions and definitions of a living wage from the Declarations of Human Rights; national constitutions; codes of conduct for NGOs, multinationals and companies; documents of the International Labor Organization (ILO); and statements from major historical figures. For many countries, a precise methodology ( Anker Methodology) aims to estimate what living wages are, with the dual requirement that they must be both internationally comparable and specific locally. One of our conditions is that this living wage thus calculated is not an objective in itself but represents a minimum. Our wish is obviously to aim beyond.




What do you mean by local artists?


We have personally met them all the artists whose artworks are accessible via Foliumize. We can attest their commitment to the protection of the environment and biodiversity. They live on or near the place where the project is taking place and that you will finance through the purchase of their artwork. As you can see, the source of inspiration of nature in their works is paramount. We invite you to discover them in the section dedicated to them.




Some companies are selling a tree for 1 euro, why not Foliumize?


The price mainly depends on 6 factors:

  • the cost of living at the location of the funded project (influence on salaries, equipment, insurance, land price, etc.);
  • whether a potential future financial return is possible. This could be the case when some partners may cut and sell the mature trees - such amounts may be raised to subsidize the intensive forestry industry - this is not the case of Foliumize;
  • intensive mechanization;
  • the topography and the difficulty of accessing the site of reforestation;
  • the state of degradation of the land and the presence of invasive plant species (requiring a long and costly first step of clearing and felling);
  • soil fertility and the climatic factor. These parameters influence the preparatory work required and the speed / ease of growth (tropical vs arid zone).
We invite you to ask questions to projects offering trees starting from 0.10 €. Often, these trees serve as a marketing strategy such as "every product bought, a tree is planted." The model advocated by Foliumize opposes such practices.





Delivery

Do I have to pay for the delivery?


No. Standard delivery is offered by Foliumize for the following countries: France, Germany, Luxembourg, Belgium, Netherlands, Austria, UK, Spain and Italy. For other countries, a variable delivery rate will apply. If you want a faster delivery, then this will incur an extra cost.
Depending on the size and number of artwork reproductions chosen, the price may vary. It will generally be between 19.99 € and 24.99 €, but it may be more if your order has many products such as canvases or framed prints. The exact amount will be communicated to you when you validate your basket, if you choose the " express delivery" option.




What are the delivery times?


For a standard delivery, offered by Foliumize the delivery times are:

  • 5 to 10 working days for an unframed art reproduction;
  • 10 to 15 working days for a canvas or a framed reproduction.
Please note, due to large volumes of parcels with delivery professionals, linked to the Covid-19 pandemic, some parcels may take longer to arrive. For express delivery (at an extra cost), delivery times are 2 to 3 working days regardless of the type of product chosen.





Art print

What is an art print?


This is a high quality print of a classic painted artwork by an artist engaged with an ecological and social project. It is a beautiful decorative object, much more original than a trivial poster. In addition, it also symbolizes your action when you decided to financed the planting of a tree and so much more!




What do you mean by "high quality" art print?


This is a museum quality print. The color rendering and the paper quality are very high end, like when you buy a reproduction in a museum. We work exclusively with professional printers able to deliver high quality to the closest to you. Our printer is a German SME, which works with FineArt printing methods made of 12 colors. This is the guarantee to get a rendering as close as possible to the original where the slightest brushstroke is vividly present.




What type of printmaking is available?


We offer two printing options:

  • The mounted canvas (2.5mm border)
  • Hahnemühle Fine Art Matt paper, 200 g / m2
Both have a matte finish, without varnish, as requested by the artists. The canvas is printed on 100% cotton canvas. The paper is thick, handmade and offers a very qualitative matt finish. For more information on this medium, you can go directly to the producer's website: https://www.hahnemuehle.com/en/digital-fineart
Please note that none of the supports are chemically bleached, for ecological reasons.
The color of the supports is a slightly warm white. You can also choose to receive your print already framed by the printer, which we warmly recommend. Indeed, Hahnemühle paper is not varnished (for ecological and aesthetic reasons). Therefore, it must be handled with great care so as not to cause micro-scratches during its unpacking or installation.




How do you limit the ecological impact of printing and shipping of the art print?



First, Foliumize chose to reproduce artwork so that the original art piece does not travel around the planet.
Therefore, Foliumize works with a printer closer to your place. It is located in Germany. We made this choice on the one hand for the quality of the prints from this partner, but also because Hahnemühle paper is also made in Germany. It makes to care about the reduction of the ecological impacts attached to the transportation of raw materials.
In addition, the weight of an art print remains extremely low, again reducing the impact of transporting goods. Finally, we have selected the printers and their paper suppliers with the greatest care. No tree to be felled for the realization of our partner's frames and canvases. The frames are mainly made from wood residue such as shavings, sawdust and dead branches (MDF materials). All the wood used (even the residues) comes exclusively from controlled German forestry. The printer has embarked on a recycling process, the cardboard boxes and cuttings are recovered, reworked to become materials that protect the corners and edges of the products during their transport. The papers all come from the Hahnemühle manufacturing company which respects the following rules:

  • papers are guaranteed acid-free,
  • papers containing wood fibers come 100% from certified sustainable forest (FSC)
  • fibers from cellullose are waste from other industries such as textiles
  • papers are 100% vegan.
For more information on the papers, do not hesitate to visit their site:
https://www.hahnemuehle.com/en/index.html





To be in a position to offer eco-designed cultural objects, in harmony with your ecological values, it is first and foremost to be able to meet your requirements and above all to answer your questions.

Foliumize shares in this FAQ answers to your questions and remains available to help you if you have new ones.

Share your questions with us