Each year marula beer connoisseurs make their annual pilgrimage to the far reaches of Limpopo to visit their favourite master brewers of marula beer. It’s a womens’ traditional craft and in order to get a taste of each woman’s brew you need to go ‘homestead hopping, visiting one home after another. Each one is different and this year Sarah Venter did her own tour of marula beer mavens and found out a few secrets along the way.
Corporate Social Responsibility
Skelmwater is a bare stony hillside dotted with baobab trees, but this has become a special place for Sarah Venter and Diana Mayne. The baobab trees here are each numbered and painted with a neat stripe around their girth. The girth of these trees has been measured since 1931. Diana and Sarah discovered this plot in 2002 when they first went to visit it and found that the measurements had been forgotten and no one was measuring them any more.
It is always a happy and vibrant day when we all go out to celebrate of a year of hard work. So much has happened for EcoProducts this year: moving to new upgraded factory premises, getting HACCP certified – two huge events! Last year we were 22 people and now we are 50 people. So we have doubled our staff and have TREBLED our production output!
We were delighted to join forces with Abalimi Harvest of Hope and have EcoProducts organic baobab powder added to their customers’ organic veggie boxes. Like EcoProducts, Abalimi Harvest of Hope works towards community upliftment through development and employment as well as strongly supporting conservation and nurturing the environment through organic farming practices. We love the work they do and we thought you’d like to learn more about them here!
EcoProducts invited 30 baobab harvesters from across the Venda area to visit the new EcoProducts Baobab Processing Facility in Makhado. The purpose of the visit was to show the harvesters where the fruit goes and what happens to the fruit once it arrives at the factory. We also wanted the harvesters and the factory staff to meet and to discuss the collection and processing challenges, and how these can be overcome through better understanding of the process.
EcoProducts is HACCP certified! It seems that only those businesses who have to go through HACCP certification understand the gruelling and hugely demanding process one has to undergo in order to get this internationally recognised food-safety certification. So we’re thrilled to announce that we are have finally achieved this milestone! Hazard Analysis Critical Control Points is […]
Bernadette McCabe is a Fine Art – Documentary stills photographer based in Cape Town who has developed a deep passion for colour, light, style, mood & texture… and for the magic of telling a story through the lens of a camera and capturing it in a single frame. She loves to create imagery that will move […]
A little while ago I told you about our Baobab Preschool Programme which our EcoProducts Foundation is supporting. Another project that we’re so excited about is the Baobab Guardians programme. The baobab tree takes 200 years to produce its first fruits, can live for over 1000 years, survives and even flourishes in almost desert-like conditions; […]
Thank you to all of you who have been so supportive of the launch of the EcoProducts Foundation. All your shares, likes and comments help spread the word and have been so encouraging to us. We’d like to tell you a little more about one of our programmes, Baobab Pre-school. Like most mothers, Venda women […]
I decided to create the EcoProducts Foundation (a non-profit organisation) when I realised that simply providing employment to local Venda communities wasn’t enough. I wanted to do more and decided to support early childhood development, which in these rural areas is very neglected. In addition, the results of my PhD research revealed that goats and drought were hampering the growth […]
Last December I visited the Sagole Big tree which is looking more magnificent than ever. Located in Vendaland, Limpopo Province, The tree has been carbon dated as being 1200 years old! It is the biggest baobab in the world. It has a girth of 37 m and a height of 22 meter and its crown measures 38 […]
Every year in February or March, I go out with a small team to do baobab fruit monitoring. This is our 10th year! It’s is a good time of year to do this because while most of the fruit have reached their full size, they have not matured (dried out) enough and have not yet fallen off the […]
Gratitude. Giving back is a way of giving thanks; thanks for what we have, and what we are able to give. And today we’re so grateful to Bonga Foods and the Bonga Foundation for their warm generosity. Their most recent donation has enabled us to give back to the Venda community which supports us in harvesting Baobab […]
'Boabab sales have been going from strength to strength and after a busy successful season of harvesting and processing we thought it was time to celebrate! It was good to get out of our dust coats and protective clothing and all the women, including me, enjoyed getting dressed up in traditional Venda clothes. One of […]
In the last of our series featuring photographer Vanessa Bristow’s wonderful work, we leave you with these simply stunning photos of baobab trees at sunset. It’s not difficult to see where EcoProducts got its inspiration from for its striking logo! 🙂
Photographer Vanessa Bristow has wonderfully captured these different birds perched in baobab trees in Zimbabwe. Featured here are a Marabou Stork, an owl and a pair of Bennett’s woodpeckers busily pecking away (the female below the male). As Vanessa says of her photographs: ‘They are in humble tribute to a mighty tree! Baobab’s provide shade in summer, beautiful […]
Here, talented photographer Vanessa Bristow shares some of her photographs of Baobabs taken at Sentinel Ranch in Zimbabwe. We’ll be featuring more of her stunning photographs during the week.