We source our marula oil from Namibia where the marula tree grows in abundance. Our trade helps the 5,000 woman of the Eudafano Women’s Co-operative earn a fair income.
The Eudafano Women's Cooperative is owned and run entirely by women. They tell us that the experience of trading and of setting up their own factory has given them entrepreneurial skills and greater status in their communities.
The women start the day under the shade of the marula tree, hand-selecting the ripened fruits that have fallen naturally to the ground. They then extract the nuts from the fruits, leaving them to dry in the hot Namibian sun. Next they are cracked open and the precious moisture-rich kernels picked out. The kernels are taken to their factory, where they’re slowly cold-pressed by hand to release the finest oil.
MEET NEME MARIA
Helping to run the co-operative has empowered Neme, and others like her, with a greater sense of independence and confidence. The women now have a regular income to help pay for necessities like medical bills and help fund an education for their children.
The co-op has turned the traditional Namibian art of producing marula oil into a thriving business. In an area with few employment opportunities, this brings many benefits. For example, the money made from 3kg of marula oil can pay for a child's school uniform and school books for a year.
TREE OF LIFE
Marula trees are key to the livelihood of the co-operative. Harvesting the fruit from marula trees doesn't just safeguard the women's source of income. It also helps keep the land sustainably productive without having to turn it over to intensive cultivation.