Processors of Fredrick’s Natural Honey, Honey Products Industries (HPI), is rolling out a project to plant species of natural trees in Mitundu, Lilongwe, with an argument that as a company they rely on trees to survive.
HPI managing director, Fredrick Matress, said from this year onwards, they will focus on as many as reforestation projects possible, adding that their intention is to also support or partner with others interested in such projects.
“We will plant 20 000 trees in Mitundu because our industry relies on them. But we are ready to support or partner with individuals or organizations that are willing to venture into this cause,” said the youthful entrepreneur.
According to Matress, their honey is “unique because it comes from forests” and that it was, therefore, only logical for them to be interested in reforestation projects.
Said Matress: “Sometimes we struggle to get honey around because of a number of aspects including deforestation, of course.”
He called on financial institutions, especially commercial banks, to consider giving out loans so that they can re-plant trees on a large scale.
“Businesspeople can invest in timber by planting trees on a larger scale if banks can consider giving them loans,” opined Matress, whose product, Frederick Natural Honey is named after him.
Fredrick’s Natural Honey, which is available in all leading shops in the country, is sourced from independent smallholder beekeepers, packaged and processed in factory hubs and distributed throughout Malawi via a franchise model.
The franchises are largely managed by the country’s young entrepreneurs whom the company identifies and trains in business management skills.
Matress is one of the country’s leading youthful entrepreneurs and business executives. He is the first Malawian to receive the SEED award for biodiversity in 2014.
SEED (https://www.seed.uno/) supports the growth of SMMEs that deliver social, environmental and economic returns in developing countries or countries with emerging economies, so contributing to local sustainable development.
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