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Company Profile

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"Marula is the food of kings" (ancient Thonga saying)

Marula Natural Products (Pty) Ltd is a company that produces oils and pulps from natural products pioneering with the marula specie. The products are completely organic, and offer unique properties and technical benefits, associated with a rich cultural history of ancient African traditions. The company is dedicated to community - based values and adheres to principles of Fair trade. Marula Natural Products fully integrates sustainable development and has adopted an Asset building approach in conducting its business operations.

MNP is based in the Bohlabela District Municipality of the Limpopo Province, in the region of Bushbuck Ridge. The Bushbuck Ridge Municipality measures approximately 260 000 hectar, settlements of 193 hectare. It is estimated that 54,6% of the population is female. MNP currently operates in about 20% the 193 settlements (42 villages). The economic base of the district is limited and characterised by high unemployment, dependency and poverty rates. A unique attribute of the area is the collection of tourism assets.

The company is owned by the Mineworkers Development Agency (MDA) and the Marula Natural Products Trust (MNP Trust) whose stake has been purchased by the WK Kellogg Foundation for the communities.

The company is led by Girlie Njoni, whose given name, Madumezulu means “Sky Thunder”, Girlie has been given the status of ‘founder’ CEO in 2003 after being with the parent company (MDA) for over 3 years. During these years as a Product development Officer Girlie has worked directly at community-level with Felicia Chiloane (community development officer) to establish committees, develop models of community trade and support village-level resource management institutions to monitor natural resource off take levels. As a program manager, Girlie has guided product development teams, ecologists, business advisors and institutional development specialists through research processes that focused on commercialization of the natural products industry. Today as CEO, Girlie’s main role is to develop appropriate business models, accelerate the establishment of market relationships which will create demand of marula products through the innovation of new products.


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