CHICAGO – Dairibord Zimbabwe Limited’s Cascade Baobab Dairy Fruit Juice has been recognized as a finalist in the dairy innovations awards held at the International Dairy Federation (IDF) summit in Chicago, USA.
The product secured its place among the top three finalists in the Innovation in Sustainable Farming Practices – Socioeconomic category, competing against strong brands from across the world.
The IDF Dairy Innovation Awards aim to promote and celebrate innovative practices within the dairy sector that contribute to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.
Dairibord, a major milk processor in Zimbabwe, launched the baobab dairy fruit juice last year as part of the indigenous fruits commercialization initiative in the country.
The product’s innovative combination of dairy and baobab, creating a well-balanced product that appeals to a wide market segment and offers natural fortification, was recognized by IDF.
This successful venture has inspired other local companies to explore the integration of indigenous fruits into various food and beverage products for both domestic and export markets.
Baobab fruit, scientifically known as “Adansonia digitata,” is a rich source of ascorbic acid, vitamin C, calcium, potassium, magnesium, and antioxidants.
Dairibord has been procuring baobab fruit from Chirundu, Chipinge, and Birchenough and has made significant strides in the commercialization of this superfood.
Dairibord CEO Mercy Ndoro expressed the significance of this award, emphasizing its role in recognizing the company’s commitment to innovation and its ability to generate game-changing ideas that positively impact the business.
She highlighted how Cascade Baobab has become the largest consumer of baobab pulp globally, contributing to the well-being of marginalized communities and aligning with the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
The Zimbabwean government has encouraged local manufacturing firms and educational institutions to explore heritage-based education to enhance their competitive edge in international markets.
Dairibord’s pioneering use of baobab as an indigenous resource demonstrates the potential for heritage-based exports, as highlighted by acting Foreign Affairs and International Trade minister Professor Amon Murwira at a recent event.
He urged local businesses to leverage their unique heritage to gain a competitive advantage in export markets.
Dairibord’s dedication to baobab conservation and plans to cultivate more baobab tree species in the country underlines its commitment to sustainable practices.
The company is involved in reseeding initiatives, distributing baobab mud balls in different parts of the country, mirroring successful efforts in West Africa.
The IDF Dairy Innovation Awards are a testament to the dynamism of the global dairy sector and offer a platform to showcase innovative processes, practices, and products that enhance efficiency and contribute to the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
These awards are hosted by the International Dairy Federation in partnership with leading food and drinks consultancy Zenith Global.
Dairibord head of branding, corporate affairs, research, and development, Ruvarashe Matambo, emphasized the company’s commitment to baobab conservation and efforts to cultivate this indigenous resource in Zimbabwe.
She also highlighted successful partnerships with organizations and societies to promote reseeding initiatives, ensuring the continued growth of baobab trees.
Dairibord’s recognition as a finalist in the IDF Dairy Innovations Awards underscores the importance of innovative practices and sustainable agricultural endeavors, aligning with the broader goals of responsible business and environmental stewardship.