Company logo of Calypso

Company logo of Calypso


Profile of CONTIGO´s partner Calypso


Santiago de Chile to Göttingen (Source: Google Earth)

Jewellery made of glass and silver


Santiago de Chile, Chile – distance to Europe: 12,200km

Founded in 1998


  • Initially Calypso, founded by Marcela Cofré Salinas and her husband Oscar, produces shoes for women, but since beginning of the 1990s the business is no longer profitable due to new export regulations
  • Idea to make jewellery came up in 1995
  • 1995: Calypso produces first jewellery items becoming another income source for the company
  • 1998: Calypso officially registers as a jewellery business
  • Calypso increases production volume, sells items locally
  • Due to weak national economy Calypso starts export
  • 2004: Calypso and CONTIGO first meet
  • 2005: New building for a workshop is acquired
  • 2009: Burglars raid into the Calypso building and house of owners during a trade fair
  • Since 2009: regular participation in international trade fairs in order to expand customer base
  • 2010: Crisis due to earth quake and rising costs
  • March 2011: Calypso is restructured and size of workshop is cut in half
  • Since 2011: Member of World Fair Trade Organisation (WFTO), strong cooperation with other Chilean fair trade organisations
  • October 2015: organisation of and participation in Chilean first fair trade fair, in order to promote fair frade

Cooperation with CONTIGO since 2004


Structure of the business

Green Glass (founded by Marcela´s son Oscar) is a business unit of Calypso, both companies work together in the same place

Number of employees:

  • 11 employees
  • Partnerships with 2 silver jewellery workshops:
    • Renato Workshop (1 employee)
    • Promano Workshop (60 employees)


  • Exports (100%) to USA, Germany, Austria, Italy, France, Norway, and the Netherlands


  • To create stable, long-term jobs
  • To promote Fairtrade in Chile
  • To set-up a new web page with online shop

Special features

Why does CONTIGO work with Calypso: Calypso and the people in the region still need full support after the earthquake. They are a small company but produce great jewellery. They also hire workers without previous education to provide everyone with a chance to earn an own income.


Fairtrade classification

FTA = Fairtrade Approved


Fairtrade aspects

Calypso complies with the following Fairtrade Principles:

No child labour

No discrimination

No discrimination due to gender, disability, religion, ethnicity, sexual orientation, political orientation, or infection with HIV

Fair wages

  • Minimum wage in Chile: US$ 370/month
  • Average wage at Calypso: US$ 650-900/month
  • Bonus for Christmas, Independence Day (US$ 40)
  • Lunch allowance (US$ 42-100)
  • Commuting allowance (US$ 72)
  • Employees receive a share of annual profit

Humane working conditions

Working hours:

  • 9 hours/day (8:30am – 5:30pm)
  • 1 break (lunch)
  • 5 days/week

Social benefits:

  • Health insurance
  • Unemployment insurance (each employee has an unemployment savings account which can be accessed after employment ended, for each year of employment one month of salary is paid into that account)
  • Pension fund for all employees
  • Financial help with rent and finding accommodation
  • Additional work can be taken home by employees to generate more income (by-piece payment)
  • Paid holidays (15 days)



  • Payroll is available
  • SAR (Self Assessment Report) was duly submitted to CONTIGO


  • Personal visits in Santiago de Chile (2008, 2012)
  • Feedback interview during several visits in Germany
  • Member of:
    • WFTO (World Fair Trade Organization) since 2011

Country information

See Encyclopaedia Britannica: Chile


Visiting Calypso


Author: Janina Lange on 29. June 2016

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