Who we are – The Team
We are Bob, Cor, Hugo, and Mutheu. Together we form a diverse team with backgrounds in (community) development, agri-business, and international trade, based in Europe and Zimbabwe. As a team, we share a strong belief in organic, fair trade business and through Kukura want to make our own small contribution to a better world. Are you with us? ?
What we want to do – The Plan
Zimbabwe has many indigenous fruits, that have been used for centuries to protect and revitalise skin and hair. As Kukura we want to collect these fruits and use the pits to press oils that can be used as 100% natural cosmetic products, creating a high-quality cosmetic brand that is green, honest, and social.
We will start with Ximenia, Marula, and Kalahari Watermelon oil, but plan to soon add Mongongo and Moringa. You can learn more about these different oils (and their benefits) on our website (www.kukura.org/our-products) We have identified three locations in Zimbabwe where we will start our operations. We will mainly work with women groups, who are keen to get going (check some of our social media channels for evidence ?)
What we stand for – Our values
Kukura means growth in Shona (one of Zimbabwe’s main languages) and that is what we stand for. We want Kukura to enable rural communities to grow by harvesting and adding value to naturally available products. In doing so, we want to be:
1 Good for Nature
We view our products as gifts from nature and so throughout our value chains we promote the philosophy that nature provides many treasures that should be used and treated with respects. Our approach therefore focuses on organic wild harvesting and growing of our products.
2 Good for people
We want our business to benefit the people and communities we work with. We pay fair prices throughout our value chains, and favour building long-term relationships with the communities that harvest our products. Together with them, we will explore opportunities for improving their livelihoods by contributing a percentage of profits to addressing community needs.
‘In this area there are no jobs, but thanks to Kukura we can work and earn money. We appreciate how they value the trees, nature, and our community’ (Chiwoniso, Kukura harvesting coordinator)
We also want consumers to be happy with our products, which should help them feel good about themselves. In doing so, we want to introduce indigenous knowledge to the global cosmetic marketplace, ensuring the use of more natural products.
3 Good for ourselves
As you can see, we have clear ideas about our values and what we stand for, but Kukura Organics is first and foremost a business. We believe growing our business in a sustainable manner, is the best way to assist and empower more people and communities.
What we need – The Crowdfunding Campaign
Together we have put in €20.000 and this will get us on the way. However, to really get Kukura going we need some more, which is why we are asking for your support. We want to raise another €10.000 with your help, and there are 3 things we want to use your money for:
1 Set up a local production facility
We want our whole production process to take place in Zimbabwe, from the harvesting of the fruits to the pressing of the oils. This will mean more jobs in Zimbabwe, and more people benefiting from our business. We will therefore set up our own production facility, which requires the purchasing of several machines.
2 Ensure organic harvesting (training & certification)
We value nature and want to our products to be harvested organically. We will use your money to train the various communities we work with in organic harvesting. We also want to make sure Kukura’s products will have organic certification.
3 Enable us to work with remote communities
The communities we work with are located in dry areas with limited economic activity and opportunities. Working in these more remote areas is more expensive and time-consuming, but we believe Kukura can be of added value particularly in those areas.
If you like our plan and what we stand for, explore the different options to support us. Of course we want to give you something back, so we give you the opportunity to be among the first to try our oils!
Lastly, besides your support, we also need realistic expectations and hope you can bear with us ? Zimbabwe is not the easiest place to set-up a business at the moment as the country is facing severe economic challenges, so we can expect some challenges on the way. You might wonder if we are crazy, but we think this is only an extra reason to set up our business, as it will benefit many people in difficult times and circumstances.
For more information about our business and campaign, follow the updates on our social media channels.
Thank you so much for your support, Ndatenda!
Bob, Cor, Hugo, Mutheu