“Don’t be a pepper in the eyes of people; Rather be salt on their tongue and make a difference that influences their senses of belonging to the earth”Israelmore Ayivor
Spice up your life……sustainably
One of the things that I want to do is never grow old, however that is something that is out of our hands. We can however make a difference in the world that we are currently living in so that our memory is not forgotten and help make people’s lives more sustainable.
It is often the case that small growers lack the support from a competent body, whether that is a good long term supportive customer or lack of technical and regulation support from a local authority. This is where we can help and support such an enterprise. Support does not just mean financial support, it also includes, technical, training, coaching and just be there to lend a hand.
The basic strategy that is needed to compete in the current commercial world can be out of reach of most. They strive to understand and comprehend the commercial world outside their comfort zone but it is increasing evident that this is way too complex for them to get a firm grasp of. Country regulations, export requirements, quality requirements, terms and conditions of trade, are all things they have to come to terms with and unless they employ specialised staff they rely on the final customer to facilitate this.
This is not often the case however, as the final customer does not always have the time or the resource to facilitate this either, so they are left to their own devices, often failing to cope and thus exposing their business to risk. Often. not even realising this is the case.
Our business philosophy is to circumnavigate these issues for the grower. Utilising our years of experience to guide, train and coach them to be more independent, while at the same time helping them establish a more robust structure and team.
In this particular case the farm has been in the making for the last 20 years. The vision being to create a fully integrate and sustainable ecosystem with organic production incorporated within. Over twenty species of trees we re initially planted in five blocks around five lakes. These blocks have now become an established forest with the pepper production intercropped & fully integrated within them. A further benefit of this is that a plethora of other flora and fauna that have colonised the area making it a self sustaining ecosystem which is breathtaking to behold.
I personally counted, during the four hours on site, over ten species of butterfly, numerous birds, including birds of prey and a troop of monkeys. I asked if they had done a biodiversity study, with the answer being “No, why would that be needed?” So one of the first things we will be organising will be a full survey of this area to establish and manage a full documented biodiversity plan. The importance of this diverse ecosystem interacting with farming should be documented and used as an example of how the two can exist together. It is heartwarming to see that this person had such a vision twenty years ago and has been able to see it through. It should be an inspiration to us all, also a reminder of all the hard work that goes into seeing an epic project like this, through to completion. OH I forgot to mention… the planted area of the farm is sixty hectares…………..Impressive!
The five lakes are fed by spring water and have different elevations. This enables the farm to be supplied by gravity fed water all year round. The surrounding forest aids rain water capture and effectively reduces soil erosion and flooding in the surrounding area. Water quality is thus maintained by the natural filtration afforded by the ecosystem.
So, we are not only going to be spicing things up for the business in terms of workload but we are going to be offering spice through the business as well.
We hope that this will be just the first of many lines that we can bring to market as truly sustainable products, echoing the vision of the producers as well as our own.
“To have a life without flavour is no life at all…….. so let’s spice it up and live life in all the flavour it brings”Anon