Starting a food processing business in Namibia: In a meeting held on 30 August 2016, the president of the Namibia Agricultural Union, Mr Ryno van der Merwe explained, to a hall full of people on the farm Neu-Otjisaouna, that the profitability of cattle and sheep farming is not close to what it should be. He explained that the expenses greatly outweigh the income made by this industry, and that the productivity of cattle and sheep farming must increase by respectively 7.8% and 2.7% in order to break even.
The number of undernourished people in sub-Saharan Africa rose from 181 million in 2010 to almost 222 million in 2016. Among children, although the prevalence of stunting decreased from 38.3% in 2000 to 30.3% in 2017, the numbers affected increased from 50.6 million to 58.7 million due to population growth.
How Lahja Started a Food Processing Business
Lahja Amakali is an inductee of the Namibia Business Hall of Fame as an emerging Agri-preneur. His business is aimed at supporting and encouraging people to get involved in agribusiness to reduce importation, poverty level, and malnutrition in Africa.
“What motivated me is to reduce importation of foods from other countries as if we do not have hands and we do not go to university to acquire knowledge like any other people. Many chronical diseases are prevailing, and it is worse when one eats what is produced and processed by another person.”
TEF Grant and Training for Food Processing Business
The training provided on the programme has been an eye opener for Lahja Amakali.
“The TEF classes we were given were my eyes opener. It pulls me closer to peers to discuss and share our challenges and success stories in our businesses. The seed capital pushed me to where I am today especially my 3 shareholders gave up and removed their cash. I could not make it if TEF was not there to rescue Niithete Agro-Business Investment cc (Nabi cc) Thumbs up to TEF. Now we have five flavours, sorghum mint, sorghum lemon, sorghum coffee substitute orange and the pure sorghum coffee substitute. And another research is on pipeline for the slimming group.”
African Success Story in Food Processing Business
The business supports 10 small scale lemon growers, 2 mint growers, 5 sorghum producers. They have 2 full time employees and 8 part time employees. Their products enter the national market through Local Product Merchant shop. They changed the attitude of not believing in blacks that they can process for national and soon International. Contract farmers who supply raw materials are expanding their areas of growing sorghum. Many farmers are starting to grow different varieties such as mint, gingers and so forth.
The business has created more opportunities for small scale growers. Training them on how to select products for marketing, empower them on backyard garden and produce biogas for cooking and manure for their small garden.
About The Tony Elumelu Foundation
The Tony Elumelu Foundation is the leading philanthropy empowering a new generation of African entrepreneurs, driving poverty eradication, catalysing job creation across all 54 African countries, and ensuring inclusive economic empowerment. Since the launch of the TEF Entrepreneurship Programme in 2015, the Foundation has trained over 1.5 million young Africans on its digital hub, TEFconnect, and disbursed nearly USD$100 million in direct funding to 18,000 African women and men, who have collectively created over 400,000 direct and indirect jobs. The Foundation’s mission is rooted in Africapitalism, which positions the private sector, and most importantly entrepreneurs, as the catalyst for the social and economic development of the African continent.
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