Soup made from miracle Moringa Tree to curb malnutrition in schools02 June 2017
Limpopo University recognised for ‘miracle’ soup
By harnessing the nutritional power of the Moringa Tree, the Enactus team from the University of Limpopo (UL), have developed Nutri-ringa, with the hopes of curbing malnutrition and alleviating food insecurity in the disadvantaged village of Tooseng, Limpopo.
THe UL team from Enactus, a platform that brings tertiary students, academic advisors and business leaders together to improve socio-economic conditions in South African communities, has been recognised as one of the eight finalists for the Barloworld Social Innovation Youth Awards (BSIYA) competing at the judging ceremony on Friday, 30 June. The national winner for the 2017 BSIYA will be announced on Wednesday, 12 July 2017.
Nutri-ringa is a food security project registered as a cooperative of Sedikong Sa Lerato Organic Farm which grows the Moringa Oleifera tree. The tree, possesses remarkable nutritional properties and the organic farm cultivates and distributes Moringa seedlings to the most economically disadvantaged households in rural Limpopo communities.
“The soup that we have developed is called ’Nutri-ringa’ and is currently in the process of being tested by scientists and medical doctors for its safety. We hope that once it is approved it will be used in the local school’s feeding scheme to provide schoolchildren with adequate vitamins, minerals and proteins to ensure sustainable health and protect them from typical diseases that go around in schools particularly when immune systems are weak,” explains Enactus UL Project Leader, Evens Artist Mathabatha.
Currently there are no similar products in the market and therefore competition is very low. The municipality has agreed to assist the team by connecting them with various sponsors, stakeholders and government departments and as such, the team has already started with the development of the brand packaging and will attend to all of the health regulations and information required to include on the packaging. Their hopes is to partner with the Department of Education for rollout in all schools.
If the integration of this -nutritious soup is successful, it is anticipated that there would be supply pressure due to high demand for the plant which is currently sold in capsules, tea bags and powder. We foresee the need to grow the workforce on the farm.
This project is not only aligned with the National Development Plan and Integrated Development Plan, but addresses goals 3, 8 and 11 of the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
Says Group Executive of Corporate Affairs at Barloworld, Sibani Mngomezulu: “Barloworld seeks to be a catalyst for change and to contribute to the empowerment and transformation initiatives that will ensure the sustainability of our broader society,” he adds.
The Enactus DUT team has also partnered with non-profit organisation Church Alliance of Social Transformation (CAST). CAST will provide basic business training on registering a business, marketing successfully, submitting tenders, managing cash flow and othe areas to enable success.
“In supporting Enactus, we are able to play an important role in promoting entrepreneurship, encouraging young people to improve lives and strengthen communities, and developing responsible leadership,” says Mngomezulu.