Malawi Mangoes, support to fruit farm development in Malawi
Malawi Mangoes aims to implement the first large scale fruit processing facility in Malawi. The company has secured a 126ha site for a banana plantation near Salima (close to the lakeshore in Central Malawi) and plans to develop a banana and mango puree export business using both commercial and smallholder fruit suppliers.
“It is estimated that the activities of the business will impact the livelihoods of up to 12,000 local households once it is fully operational.”
October 2013: The overall development of Malawi Mangoes as a new and ground breaking initiative in Malawi has gone well, although progress was slow during the period of BIF support due to problems sourcing funding. When the company secured their final piece of equity funding in early 2013, the project was forecast to be back on track with the first mangoes being processed at the end of the year. They launched their official website in October 2013.
The inclusive business initiative
The objective of this venture is to construct a processing plant, powered by solar and biomass / biogas, to produce mango and banana concentrate and pureé for export to African, Western and Asian beverage and retail markets. Malawi Mangoes’ inclusive business model is to source large volumes of fruit from a mixture of smallholder farmers and its own Rainforest Alliance certified plantations.
The commercial driver for the business is the strong growth in demand for mango and banana pulp in both global and regional markets. The business capitalises on low production prices, excellent growing conditions and access to water from Lake Malawi for irrigation purposes.
The decision to export pulp products mitigates the geographical and infrastructure challenges faced by Malawian exporters since they do not demand rapid access to major
transport hubs that fresh produce requires.
The company works with local communities to graft material of preferred mango varietals to local trees, thereby increasing the yield, quality and saleability of the mango puree product; Malawi Mangoes then guarantees to buy all the mangoes grown on these trees. In an area where less than 15% of the population has regular employment, the company generates over 1,000 jobs in farm work and at their processing plant. The activities of the business impact the livelihoods of up to 12,000 local households.
Innovation and scale
Malawi Mangoes is an example of how such a value-added business development opportunity can be created in Malawi, potentially encouraging other industry players to copy their approach and generate further export opportunities with associated pro-poor impacts.
Objectives of Facility engagement (December 2011)
The Facility is supporting this ambitious start up with consultancy for some of their farm planning work, including irrigation design, setting up the banana farm to meet organic standards and planning the mango out-grower scheme.
|Sector||Agriculture & Food|
|Low income focus||Producers & suppliers|
Sales of fruit pulp to regional and international markets
|Key themes||Farmers as suppliers & clients; inclusive supply chains ; climate-smart solutions|
|Malawi Mangoes contact|
Craig Hardie, Managing Director,