- Established in 2017 -
We are returning orphans crops back into the food system
We started off at our local farmer’s markets in Botswana in February 2017. We started at Julia Farmer’s Market selling our then homemade jams. We were pleasantly surprised by how much people loved them. We were told that as first timers at a market we should expect sales to be slow because people don’t know our products, but surprisingly enough on that particular day we had one of the busiest stands! We saw a golden opportunity to celebrate our culture with our love for good food. One of the Indigenous fruits that we like to experiment with is called the Morula Tree. Due to the fact that it grows a lot in our country Botswana, its fruit often goes to waste every year. We have grown up seeing the morula trees and we have eaten the fruit.
However we wanted to bring a new, unique and exciting angle to this orphan crop. Morula is what is known as an Orphan Crop. It is under-commercialization, under-researched and under-utilized. It is packed with 8 times more Vitamin C than oranges. The fruit is also rich in oleic acids and antioxidants. We wanted to put Botswana on the map for its indigenous foods whilst pairing them with contemporary flavors for a new gastronomic experience.
As our journey progressed, we realized that the morula fruit produces a seed oil that is becoming popular in the cosmetic industry. However to get to 12 tonnes of seed oil you need to go through roughly 300 tonnes of fruit pulp and our big question was “What happens to all that fruit?” As it turned out when it comes to Morula seed oil, the fruit waste is the bottle neck. This made it difficult for local small companies to expand and grow their businesses. Thus making it difficult for the companies to increase employment. These local companies work with harvesters who are mainly women who live in the villages. Harvesting season is a very important time for them because it allows them to earn a living in order to support their families. We also wanted to participate in making a positive change in these women’s lives. It was in this discovery that Maungo Craft was truly born.
Maungo Craft decided to form symbiotic relationships with seed oil producers by plugging into the Morula Value Chain so that after they extract the seed oil we make use of the nutritious fruit that would typically go to waste. We have turned the fruit into an Award –Winning brand that makes Artisanal, Handcrafted, Low sugar preserves that don’t have any nasty artificial preservatives.
They use the seed oil and we use the fruit pulp. This is incredibly EXCITING because by doing so, we are PROMOTING THE GROWTH OF TWO INDUSTRIES (for now) at the same time in Botswana – food and seed oil. Both these industries have the ability to create jobs and diversify the economy. We are reintegrating orphan crops back into the food system and changing our relationship to our indigenous foods. Creating a new Climate Economy is not only a worthwhile endeavour but a necessary one.
We are thrilled that EVERY JAR that you purchase from us will not only be ridiculously tasty and low in sugar, it will also impact the community, the country, the effects of the climate as well as tackle food waste!
We started out at our local Farmers market and now we distribute to Hotels, Specialty Stores and Retailers and do Gifting. We have won one over 11 Awards to date including receiving a Gold at The World Marmalade Awards in the United Kingdom (Commonwealth Category). We have also been endorsed by Martha Stewart, an Iconic, Household Food name. We use orphan crops that typically go to waste and turn them into delectable memories. Like we always say “We Put Culture in a Bottle!”
We look forward to Jammin with you!
“Experience delectable treats from the ‘Home of Mankind’! ”