Vegetable Value Addition

Food Processing

Health practitioners recommend colored dish for an improved functionality of the body, meaning it is nutritious. For a successful startup an entrepre- neur use emergent strategy to enlarge or gain a market pie, one can ask how?, a question to be answered later. Trainings that she received from HiH Zimbabwe enabled her to understand the business environment in which she operates in, which is described with high competition faced by horticultural entrepre- neurs in selling of leafy vegetables. Marketing, business opportunity iden- tification, financial man- agement among other trainings are of relevance in running an enterprise. Realizing the increase of competition in horticulture business, she decided to add value to her products where food processing is identified as a strategy to propel the business in- stead of selling them unprocessed.

 

 

Value addition process and promotion

Before handing food, hygiene is of priority, jik is used as an disinfectant for washing hands, utensils and the vegetables. Vegetables are sorted, partially cooked, dried for about 3 days using a solar drier and packaged. This prepares the product for the market. Adding value and identification and develop- ing multiple product lines is a strategy that entrepre- neurs are adopting to and for market entry and gain share. Without promoting the product, it is difficult it is difficult to locate the ‘ market gate’ . Mavis launched her product (solar dried vegetables) at village level in a forum of tradition- al leadership and stockholders that includes the village head (s), councilor and Agritex department and other government officials.

“Though the enterprise is yet to grow, launching the product was part of market research andI was able to interact with the potential customers. Through the re- views I gained insights to develop the product. For ex- ample, customers recommended not to add spices and preservatives to the vegetable. Currently produc- tion is kept low at 60x500g of dried vegetables monthly sold at $0.50 each. If it was not marketing and busi- ness skills that I was capacitated with by HiH Zimba- bwe would not have identified the promising business opportunity and developed the product. The earnings from the business are used to buy the basic commodi- ties, such as relish, salt, sugar to mention a few.” She said.

  

Plans

By 31 December 2017

 To merge with other members’ products and develop group products lines that include coffee, strawberry, dried vegetables and broiler

 To develop the brand name

 To improve packaging

Therefore, one can point out that, food processing as a strategy supports and needs to be adopt- ed by horticulture enterprises. And there is need for the entrepreneurs to invest in branding and packaging that a successful enterprise is launched.