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Ayisha, CAMFED Association member, on TV3 Ghana - Video Transcript

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Berla Mundi, Presenter We are here in Sorugu, Tamale in the northern region, where we’re taking a look at some of the economic activities of women in this region. For a very long time, women were not allowed to farm on their own, but rather to support their husbands in the farm. But at least one way by which these women have been empowered is by producing shea butter.

And today Asheba Company LTD and of course the CEO, Ayisha, will take us through the process of making shea butter, she will tell us a bit about her business, how it started, and how she now exports quite a lot of shea butter to other parts of the world and also other parts of this country. Later on, we’ll take a look at the production of kente, also in this region.

You’re welcome. My name is Berla Mundi, and again, we’re here in Sorugu in Tamale in the northern region. Let’s go take a look at what’s happening behind me. We’ll dance a bit and then we’ll start the processes. This is proudly brought to you by Malta Guiness and also Cussons baby wipes.

 

[TV commercial break]

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter I guess we can sit under the tree after that dance. I’m exhausted. Welcome back. This is The Day Show and we’re here in Sorugu with Ayisha. She’s a CEO of Asheba Company Limited and they produce shea butter, which is exported in most cases, and also transported to other parts of the city. How are you doing?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur I’m fine.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter What were they singing? I was trying to understand what they were singing.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur The song was a welcome song.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Okay.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur To welcome you to Sorugu. in particular our processing center.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter I see.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur So it was a welcome song.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Maraaba means welcome.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter In Dagbani?  

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Yes.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter How are you doing?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Oh, I’m fine.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter It’s pretty hot down here, or up here if I could say, up north. But you set up this place, how long have you had this place for?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur So this was built in 2014. And the business was started in 2012 by real estate in 2013.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Before that, what were you doing? Were you involved in any other business?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Yeah. So before I started the business, after I completed Tamale Polytechnic, then now Tamale Technical University, I actually had a job with a NGO, but that didn’t work. We were actually working with volunteer teachers in their communities.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Okay.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur So at that point, I developed interest of teaching. So I went back to the untrained teachers course at BATCO, Bagabaga Training College. But due to the challenge of paying my school fees, I dropped out.

So, somebody introduced me to CAMFED (Campaign for Female Education). And then it was said that they help girl child education. So I actually ran to them thinking that I could get the help to go back to school, but it didn’t work.

Another opportunity of starting business come up. So I drop out from the school. And then I was trained actually by CAMFED as a peer educator. So I was going round to the schools to train people on financial literacy and entrepreneurship. So before they introduce innovation visa program under a MasterCard Foundation. And this encourage us to apply with a business that will help your community.

It’s not looking for the money for you and your family, but the business should have impact in your community. So I sat down to start off the business that my mother, my late mother – may she rest in perfect peace – so it was her business and most of the women here, that’s what they are doing, apart from helping their husband and family

So I said, okay, me, I will start the shea butter business to help them with buyers because they were having challenge of buying and selling their shea butter. And then because of that I have to go through a lot of training to get the quality that the outside country needs. So then I will now train them too come out with a product that we can export.

So through that CAMFED supported me of 300 Ghanaian cedi to start. So I started with their products, that’s their shea butter cream, but then when we went for a trade show that they were sponsored by me to go, I went and I saw that there was a lot of opportunity for the raw shea butter as well. So I then started the raw shea butter aspect again.

So that’s how come I have to work with them then to find them buyers. In fact when I say buyers, not any other buyer, but those who come and buy a premium price.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Oh, I see. That’s interesting. But even before this business, from what you’re saying, you lived all your life here in the northern region.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Yes, I grew up in this particular community. After school I got married in town, but I still come here almost every day because my business is here.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter I see. So for a lot of these women, I can just imagine because we’re talking about economic empowerment. What was it like back in the day for women like these? Were they given the chance to go to school like you went to school?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Not really. Even myself. It was, I was fortunate because they were to my father, my dad give me out to my auntie who was to take care of me. And most of that, when you go to your aunt’s place, you have to just help her in cooking, if she’s doing any business, you help, but no school.

Mostly, it’s not that some of them don’t put them to school, about 95% of them don’t go to school. So I don’t know what happened. Me, I was here and then anytime my auntie came to pick me, I’ll start crying. So it was true that about ten years above I was so home I wasn’t going to school.

So finally, the one who was next to me, they give birth again. Like before they pick a daughter out, they have to, you have to have a junior sister before they pick you. So my mom give birth to their third one. So my aunties say, okay, Ayisha don’t want to go with me, so why not I’ll pick [her sister] instead of Ayisha. So that was how come I didn’t go to my aunt’s and I was fortunate to start a school here.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Your school was right here? Just this compound?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Just this, for the primary, but they just says it’s a bit far.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Okay. And here you are today. I would love to see what the process is like in making shea butter. And as your ladies are here, I’m sure they’ll take us through it.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Yes. So for shea butter, it involves a lot of hard work. That’s why we are always advocating or campaigning for a good price, because you have to go through a lot of process and a lot of sweat and be tired. So maybe on our way, you try some to see if you can do.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter I hope so.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur If you can produce shea butter.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter I hope.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur So I will help you to do that.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Okay. So where are we going to start from?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur So we are starting from the washing the nuts, because it actually starts from the farm when they pick, but this is not the season. So we start from washing, then crushing, roasting…

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Hey, that’s a lot. Let’s go and start then. I think the ladies are also getting ready. So where do we go?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur This way. All right let’s go.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter So I assume this is the first stage?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Yes.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Okay. What’s going on here?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur So this is the washing process. They have to wash the nuts because this one is the whole nut; they have to wash it.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Okay.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur So before they would dry it small and sort the black black ones.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter They take the black black ones out. Why?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur So the black ones are the spoiled ones. So if you want quality shea butter, you have to remove all the black ones.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter So as for the black ones, you can’t use it for anything else?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur You can use it for, because on the process of going, I’ll show you what you can use the black ones for.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Okay. So it doesn’t go to waste?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur No, no, no. There’s nothing wasted in shea butter.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter I see that they’ve gone to dry it. That’s the next stage from here. How many times do you wash it? Because I realize…

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur So it’s three times, we wash it three times.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Okay. And then you go and dry?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur They would dry it.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Why do you need to dry?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Yeah. So there is water inside. Before you send it to a grounding mill, you have to dry it small, not much, just for the water to dry out. Yes.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter So how long usually do you give for it to dry.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur If there is sun or if the way the air is blowing, let’s give it like 5 to 10 minutes.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Oh, just about 5 minutes. Okay. I thought maybe you leave it for some 24 hours.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur No, no, no.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter All right. All right. I see. And I see that they are sorting out the black ones and putting this on the side. So this is where you do that?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Yes. That’s the stage.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Interesting. So usually how many women do you have working on your, what do you call this? Your factory? Your processing site?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Yes.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter How many women do you usually have?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Yeah. So actually, this time we are not too much busy, but when we have an order of exports and 24 metric tons, 24 metric tons, or 27 metric tons. You see them here, plenty, Others are even coming from different communities to train us the way. But we are less busy, that’s why you see only a few women.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter All right. So from this point, where do we go?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur So we go to the grinding bit.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Why do you have to do this again?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur So you just dry it for some time, then you start the roasting.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Oh, okay.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur You have to wash it with water. So just to make sure that the water is…

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Isn’t that what the roasting will do, it will also take out the excess water, right?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Yes. So with this, you can’t mill it you have to roast it.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Okay. For how long? Until it dries up?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur So with this you can use, like, 15 minutes and you start roasting.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Anyway, so we’re going to be roasting after this. And where do you roast?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur So, some do roast in there.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Oh, I thought the fire here meant roasting, that’s a totally different…

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur That’s cooking.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Oh, that’s cooking. You roast and you cook as well.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur You roast, you mill, you saw that the grand mill is two, one for crushing, one for milling, So we mill it in a base form, then you now come to the

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Okay. It’s in a base form. Then you now come to that mill.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Oh, hold on because I’m getting confused. Let’s go and roast it, then we’ll know. How do you say let’s go? And what language is this?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Dagbani.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Dagbani. Let’s go and roast. Now we’re here. And this is where they are frying?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Roasting.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Roasting takes place. And this is the…?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur The roasting machine. That they have to fill it until it’s full. Then they close it and now they put it on top of the fire.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter For how many minutes?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur For 25 minutes.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter So there’s a sound that the water makes that would determine whether it’s cooked?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur It’s cooked.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Yeah I can hear some sound. So when it makes the sound it means it’s dry? So if it wasn’t cooked, it wouldn’t make any sound?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur No, no.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Okay. So how are they going to pour it?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur So they are pouring it into their basins.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter How long have these women been working for you?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur I’ve started this business for like for the past nine years now. Yes. So and they are all in this community working here.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter So for like nine years they’ve been working with you?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Yes.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Oh, okay. But what led you to starting this business?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Yeah. So me, myself, I grew up in this community.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter What’s the name of this community again?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Sorugu. So, it was a business for my mother and then the whole community women, that is their main business. So at first they used to go through a lot of challenges before they were extracting butter. Like, as you’ve seen the machines here, they used to pound it instead of crushing it with the machine. They had to pound it in the water.

So with the pounding, after that they didn’t use this at first, they used pots, then the fire there were to face to their fire. Okay. Then even when they finish item, there was no grinding mill in this community. They have to carry to a different community full of this basin to a different community to mill. Then when they come back, there is a machine here for knead.

Okay. By that time they had to knead with their hands. So it takes them a lot of days before they can come up with a product called shea butter and after that, they send it to the main market to sell. So they were using a calabash.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Yeah, I remember that.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur So for us, we are weighing it. We know the quantity, and then we pay according to the quantity. But in the market, it wasn’t like that. They just pour it into the calabash and then they go those in the market, they will just lift it and say, “Your shea butter is not heavy. I’m paying you this amount of money,” without putting it on any scale. Yes.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Well, I guess it’s time to pour it. This is very heavy metal, so.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Yeah.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter I love the smell.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur You can hear chocolate.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Exactly, yes. It smells like chocolate. Okay. Well, let’s go take a look at the other processes involved as well. Let’s go.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur In the fire you have to pour it for it to get cool before.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Oh, and you spread it so that it can penetrate. Okay. Okay. But it’s hot. And they are putting your hands in there! They’re used to the heat?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Yes. Do you want…

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter I want to touch it and see. Because I don’t understand how they just took something from the fire. It’s hot.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur It’s hot.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter It is actually hot. And she’s busy picking things from this.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur She’s used to it.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter I don’t think I can get used to this. So we have to wait for this to cool down?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Yes. Like 15 minutes or 20 minutes. It will be cool. Then we go to the grinding mill.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Oh, we have to grind it again?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Yes, we have to mill it into paste.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Oh into paste. Okay. Okay. All right, we’ll just wait a bit and then we’ll take it and take a look at what the process also is like.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter So the roasted shea nuts are ready for milling.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Yes.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Okay. So this machine is different. This is what turns it into paste? And it’s been programed that way?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Yes.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Interesting. So do you mix it with water or something?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur No. But it will come out, that’s why you roast it, to get it into a paste, you have to roast it. If not, it will not come out.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Otherwise it will not, okay, so if you had just dried it and put it in, it would have come out the same way it came out here as well?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Yes, yes. It will come out with the powder form. It will mill, but in powder form. Yes.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Oh, okay. All right. So let’s do this.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur At that point, you see she adds water to it? To hear the sound of dry air before she can pour it, so if you miss that, it’s not properly dry. And you are not getting a paste like this. It should be in paste form. But with this, yes, you can still make shea butter with the rough one like this, but you lose some quantity of oil in there. Yes.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter So how do you get it to turn into this?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur So you roast it to make sure that, yes, this one, she has finished with it so she will continue

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Oh, okay.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur But she will not get enough oil as this.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Does she have to add some oil to it then?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur No, you are not adding any oil. You are extracting the oil from this.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter It looks different from the other one. This looks like it has more water.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Yes. So when you melt it, it’s hot then for it to get cold fast for you to knead, you have to put some water on top of the basin. So that it will be easy to get cold. Then now mix it with water and then pour it into the kneader.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter So they have mixed all these with water already?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Yes.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter There is a stick that they use with mixing?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Yes, because it is hot, they have to use sticks.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Okay. This is cold, though. Okay. All right. So we’re ready to go in kneed. Yes. Let’s go do that.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur That is the modern machine that we use for the kneading. So the machine is doing this, but before the machine, this is how it was done. So let me give you a glove, because your…

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter My hands will get dirty.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Yes. So wear this.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Okay. Let’s go. 

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter So that’s what she’s doing there?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Yes. So and even up to now, some people don’t have access to the machine. So this is how they knead their shea butter. Yes.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Okay, I’m ready. The woman is strong.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur So you are just up, you have to go down, deep, deep down.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Why is mine not making noise? I’m tired. Okay. You carry on, carry on. And at this juncture, we’re going to have to take a break before I get soaked in shea butter. But we’re learning how to make shea butter the traditional way. I’m here at Asheba Company Limited in Sorugu in the northern region, Tamale to be precise. And when we get back, we’ll go to the next stage, so keep watching.  

 

[TV commercial break]

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Welcome back. This is still the Day Show, we are here in Sorugu, in Tamale in the northern region of Ghana. We’re learning how to make shea butter with Asheba Company Limited and the CEO is here. And so we’ve gone through a number of processes.

 

Time now to look at the finished product of kneading, by the way, not the entire finished product, but just the end product of kneading the shea nuts. And then after that, we’re going to boil it. And so Ayisha is here, she’s going to take us to the next process. I still have my cloth because it looks like before I’m done I’ll be soaked in shea butter. So let’s carry on. So, what does it look like when you’re done kneading?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur I’ve done it and this is what you get.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Oh, okay.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur So you scoop it out from the water, then you are boiling. So this is the boiling stage.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter So what do you boil with, water?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur No, you just put it like that.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Oh and it melts.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur It melts on its own. She pours it inside like this and then it starts boiling. But then you have to be stirring it bit by bit.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Am I doing it right? Go me.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur So, bit by bit. So this is the first cooking stage.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter There are different stages?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Yes.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Why and how?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur So why? Because if you cook it at the first stage, you cook it halfway. So when it is like this, it will settle. So the waste will go down, then the oil will come on top like this one. So you can see the oil here.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Okay. So the oil is another one?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Yes, so let her help you.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter I was doing it too slow? Ayisha you should have told me to go fast. Let’s go see the oil.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur So this one is almost done. So with this small thing, she will scoop it out, she will scoop it. So she will fix another pot here and scoop it’s there.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur For the next boil. So with that one you just add a little water into the pot and then scoop the oil inside there with a little it’s just small not small fire again so it to boil the final one.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Okay so you boil three times before you get the final product?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Two times.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Two times? No, but you said this is one boiling and then you bring it here.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Yes. So this one goes is the same. So this one also with time like this before you scoop.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Oh, okay. All right. Then after that, you put on low heat, with a little water. And then what do you get?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur So she’s still adding to this.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Okay. This is a lot of manpower. I won’t lie to you. From beginning to end. How many ladies did you start with?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur So I started with two. Because at first I was doing only the cosmetics. So the value addition. But before I expanded to raw shea butter, I have to get more women to do the processing for me.

So if I need, like, 20 foot container of 40 foot container, I need a lot of women to work with in a month. Then we can organize it quickly. And then other communities, about ten communities around here, they are all doing the processing. So they all bring their shea butter.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter I see. But for me, I think this is a good thing because look at all these women here. Previously, they may not have had jobs to do. So this is a way of also empowering them.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Empowering them. So this is their main source of income apart from farming and, you know, their farm and they don’t farm directly, they help their husbands to farm. So when it’s time for shea picking and the season comes, then they only pick around their husband’s farm. So it’s a kind of capital for them to start.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Oh, I see.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur But it’s all year round processing. But the season is once in a year.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter When exactly do you harvest shea nuts?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur So as by now, from now to next month, it will start.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter From now to next month, so between March and April is when you harvest?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Yes.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Oh, I see. And so this community does it only share the farm or you have other… ?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur No, we don’t farm share. It grows well. But each woman pick from their family’s farm land. Like, their husband. So in case the man is having two wives, they either share the shared risk among themselves or they do to each other. So you picked today and then the following day, the other woman will also go and pick. So even if there are four women, they all have to be picking from their husband’s farm land.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Oh, I see. Okay. So this is what it looks like.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Yes. So after your first cooking and then second cooking, you know, it will be hot. So it’s in oil form, then you leave it overnight. So, early dawn, you have to come and then scoop it into their basins like this, then you stir it with a stick until it’s solidified like this.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Oh it’s not like you leave it to solidify on its own?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur No, you have to stir it. So, like, this is ready. That’s your raw shea butter. Final product.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter The processes they have to go through. Okay. But this is soft, usually the shea butter hardens a bit.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Yes. So because of the weather. So this one like this it’s a bit hard.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Oh, okay. So if you have been wondering how to get your shea butter and in fact, what kind of methods are involved in getting the finished product, then this is what we’ve just shown you, thanks to Ayisha and her team of women here in Sorugu in Tamale. And I think I like the process, even though it’s tiring, it demands a lot of manpower and number of hours as well to get to this point.

But I’m sure that once you get to this point, you are relieved because you know that you’ve gone through, you know, something worthwhile. So this is what it is. And this you export. How do you feel when you’re done with all of this?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Yeah. So I always feel great because even though it’s been done by my great women, for you to know that there is spoil in the seat. And then the process alone involves a lot of wonders. Because you have to go through if you see you don’t believe that you can get something done. But with patience and hard work, you come out with this.

And then they use, because most of the cosmetics companies are using this shea butter, it’s natural, it has no side effects for your skin or for your hair. And then it’s edible, you can eat with it, you can cook your dawa dawa jellof with shea butter.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Are you making some dawa dawa jellof for us?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Yes.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter I’ve never tried it before, I’m looking forward to that. Dawa dawa jellof.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Dawa dawa jellof.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Oh, okay. This is going to be nice. So even to fry your fish you can use this?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Yes.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter I’ve noticed some people add scented, you know, products to the shea butter as well.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Yes so that’s the value addition for cosmetics because some people don’t like the strong sense of shea butter. Even though some people like it as a taste, the natural way, and then others too will want to hear the scent of fragrance in this. So that’s how come sometimes we also add value to it to make cosmetics for the skin or the hair.

And we also produce some for little babies because here, when babies are born here, the first food they eat is shea better. Yes, on a process of bathing the baby, they also add it even though they say we shouldn’t give water. But that is what they add, raw one, they will add it to a bit of hot water and feed their baby and then they use it to do the umbilical cords until it’s removed. And they bath the baby with the shea butter.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter No soap?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur They bath with soap, after that they rub the whole body with shea butter.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Yeah, okay. So there are lots of benefits. Thank you so much. So from here, we’re going to see how she finally packages her products for export and for transport to the bigger cities as well. And after that, we move to the community. We’re going to take a look at how kente is produced here in the northern region. So keep watching, we will be back with more.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter So what’s happening here?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur It’s still shea butter, but packaged in small small sizes for the skin and then the hair. So we have different types of packaging and different products.  

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Have you added anything?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Yes, lemongrass.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Ah, that’s what I smell. I hear that’s also very good for the skin. And what’s in this one?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur This one has lemongrass, and that is a smaller one.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter And this you can use for hair and body?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur This you can use for hair but I have other products for hair. So this product is for hair. The one with the green lid. This is for hair.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Okay. So what have you added to this?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur So this one there is different herbs. It makes the hair grow and cure it, when you have dandruff and you put it on it grows. And we also have lip balm for your lips.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter Oh, that’s nice. Well done. And I’m sure this is not all. So this is the label when it finally goes off.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Yes. And then go to the market.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter How many do you export in a month, let’s say?

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur For the raw shea butter, if we had an order of one container, in a month we are able to meet the target which is, say, 20,000 kilos of shea butter. Yes, 27,000 kilos of shea butter.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter That’s a lot. All right. Well, we’re going to take leave of you now. We will go to the kente weaving place first. And then after that, in the evening, there’s going to be a party with you.

 

Ayisha, CAMFED Association Member and Entrepreneur Dawa dawa jellof with shea butter.

 

Berla Mundi, Presenter With shea butter, I’m looking forward to it.

So, Asheba Company Limited. And of course, she showed us what her company does, producing shea butter for export and also for local consumption. We’re going to take a look at other women who are also being empowered through kente weaving.

And later in the evening, we’ll come back and have a party with herself and some of the rural folks. This is the day show. We’ll be right back to continue.

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