We pride ourselves in being a socially responsible company of the absolute highest order. Ask the avocado community around us, the small scale commercial farmers whom we have the most wonderful symbiotic relationship with. Rob Clowes has been farming avocados in Southern Tanzania since 2006, from the most humble of beginnings with his wife and family, along with his good friend Samuel Katsekera. Together, Kuza, which means to grow, to get big, has done exactly that. Blessed with growing conditions that exist in only a few places on the planet, Kuza will continue to nurture what is important at the core of the business, the community and the product. We work hard. There are no off days in the rural highlands, nature dictates that to us. Nurture, grow, remain balanced and always remember that the end consumer of the avocado fruit is your customer.
What is an outgrower or what is an outgrowers model? Quite simply, it is a series of smaller scale commercial farmers, with smaller sized plots of land, who as a collective operate as a large sizeable area of harvest. By way of reference, there are an estimated 500 million small scale farms globally supporting nearly 2 billion people, nearly 30 percent of the whole world's population. Incredible.
At Kuza, we have always believed that not only can these growers be competitive, but be the future of the industry.
We harvest from thousands of farmers and pride ourselves for paying a fair price. We have sold and subsidised millions of trees to farmers, enabling a faster growth to harvest time, by maximising the possible space each farmer has at their disposal. Planting an orchard, big or small requires patience, years until your first fruits are available for harvest.
Much of this move to avocado farming by the small scale farmers has displaced much lower income crops, enabling farmers to afford some of the things we take for granted. These include improved healthcare and healthcare plans, mobility through affording motorcycles which promotes goods movement far easier. Lastly, and possibly most importantly, many of the farmers have been able to afford education for the next generation that was once beyond reach.
Kuza also provides guidance on sustainable and affordable farming with emphasis on applying natural and organic inputs, including manure applications, mulching and conservation of the environment.
More recently, with cheaper input applications, and a focus on regenerative farming and organic production of the crop, exactly the same we are using on our organic farm, we have transferred knowledge through our extension worker model. Regenerative farming is new to the commercial operators, completely natural for many small scale farmers.
We provide access to an export market for first grade crop through buying the avocados at a competitive and fair price. Kuza provides access to a sustainable market for second grade fruit by buying these fruits for both the production of avocado oil and soon to be produced HPP guacamole.
We are happy to say that the gender gap has narrowed significantly over the last half a decade, around two in five farmers are woman.
The future for Kuza working with the outgrowers and imparting knowledge from our own commercial farm means we reach the same objective sooner. Quality avocados from Tanzania.