Baobab: an unusual win-win fruit

May 13, 2021


The southern African wilderness (aka bush) is stunningly beautiful. Besides the warm and welcoming local population there is a wealth of exotic and beautiful plants and animals that you have never seen before and will never forget.
An excellent example is the Baobab tree (Adansonia digitata), the iconic symbol of the African savannah. Some of the descriptive names of the tree are tree of life, pharmacy tree or the arbre à palabre - the place in the village where the elders meet to resolve problems. The life span of a tree can be over 1000 years and there are numerous traditional uses for every tree element by the local population.

Baobab trees often take 100 years to produce their first fruit crop and therefore cannot simply be planted or cultivated. The pulp of which is naturally stored in powder form. Most of the crop has until recently been purchased for use in beauty products, but increasingly the fruit is used in food. Baobab has been shown to have exceptional concentrations of vitamin C, calcium, fibre, iron, magnesium and potassium and rates amongst the highest in the antioxidant scales.

How can we responsibly source this precious and delicious nutty and fruity tasting African ingredient for our healthy smoothies? Providentially, we met a pioneer in the responsible sourcing of valuable indigenous plants in Africa, Gus le Breton, also known as the African Plant Hunter and the Co-founder of B'Ayoba. Whilst working in a refugee camp he searched for a gainful employment for the population using local resources. This led to the establishment of an organised and sustainable baobab fruit harvesting and farming enterprise, providing a regular income and social infrastructure to a population without other viable resources. B'Ayoba has gone on to obtain health and quality certification for baobab export and an equitable marketing arrangement. Partnering in such a sustainable and responsible enterprise is precisely at the heart of our NiQui vision and we endeavour to explore further exceptionally healthy, delicious and less well known fruit in the next range of smoothies with the likes of Gus and rural farming communities.

These are precious win- win situations we strive to develop. Explore the baobab farming community, medical facts on baobab fruit and the beautiful southern African Bush using this link.