Show you careEthical Food & Drink News & Features
This autumn, Traidcraft, the UK’s leading fair trade organisation, is urging people around the country to ‘Show You Care’ and support its life-changing work by buying fair trade.
When you buy fair trade products, producers and artisans in some of the world’s poorest regions can be lifted out of poverty and supported to build sustainable livelihoods for themselves and their families.
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Swaziland’s Chilli Grandmas
As part of the ‘Show You Care’ campaign, Traidcraft is highlighting many powerful stories of producers it works with around the developing world – people like Swaziland’s inspiring Chilli Grandmas.
The ‘missing generation’
Swaziland has the world’s highest HIV infection rate, with more than a quarter of the adult population suffering from the disease.
This has led to what is known as the ‘missing generation’, with many people dying in their 30s and 40s. The responsibility of caring for their children falls to the wider family, such as grandparents.
The group of nine Chilli Grandmas are all members of the Mavubetse Cooperative working for a company called Black Mamba, which produces a range of tasty fair trade sauces and pestos, sold through Traidcraft.
The nickname ‘Chilli Grandmas’ stems from their work growing some of the chillis for Black Mamba. This forms a vital part of their income and has helped to transform their lives and those of the children they care for.
The group also grows tomatoes, spinach, green peppers, cabbages and onions – for themselves and their families, and to sell locally.
Buying from Traidcraft helps companies like Black Mamba support the development of new skills and farming techniques, meaning all produce is organic and workers who have suffered such heartbreak can provide a better future for their families – with enough money to feed their families and pay for school fees.
Ntombi Ndlovu is one of the chilli-growing Grandmas working for Black Mamba who cares for her grandchildren.
‘My grandchildren are the best thing to me. The chillis we grow are very special – we don’t use fertilisers or anything; we just grow organic chillis for Black Mamba.
‘Keep on buying the products – when you buy from Black Mamba, Black Mamba is buying from us, so we’re able to feed our families and the ones who are sick can get the support they need.’
Ntombi Ndlovu, ‘Chilli Grandma’
Black Mamba range
The Black Mamba range, which includes Black Mamba Fair Trade Chilli Sauce (125ml, £2.25) and Black Mamba Fair Trade Basil Cayenne Pesto (210g, £3.95) can be bought from Traidcraft’s online store, and from fair traders and Traidcraft stockists across the country.
Click here to find out more about the fair trade products available through Traidcraft.