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So far profound has created 33 blog entries.

Eleven Rural Finance Matchmaking Sessions for African entrepreneurs at BioFach 2017

February 28th, 2017|

African suppliers often cannot access the necessary financial services they need; their financial position makes them too large to be targeted by development aid interventions, but too small to qualify for loans from many private banks. This space is known as the ‘missing middle.’ At the same time, social lenders in Europe and North America cannot identify a sufficient number of viable projects to fund and face high risks catering to the needs of the missing middle. ProFound contributes towards bridging this financial gap through organising matchmaking sessions between suppliers and social lenders. “ProFound provides full value chain solutions from [...]

BioFach 2017: The Organic Africa Pavilion celebrates African diversity

February 24th, 2017|

In the second year of the Organic Africa Pavilion at BioFach, ProFound brought a mix of African culture and professionalism. The pavilion’s 15 exhibitors from Ethiopia, Ghana, Senegal, Burkina Faso, Zimbabwe and Mozambique displayed high-quality organic ingredients, including baobab, honey, cocoa, coffee, fresh papaya, desert date oil, neem oil and dried mango. Our authentic Ethiopian coffee ceremony, organised with the Ethiopian consulate, attracted visitors and energised business-making. The participants of the Organic Africa Pavilion had excellent visibility at BioFach, and the response from visitors was inspiring. We reached more than 750 business contacts during the 4 days, of which 65% [...]

ProFound launches certification tool at BioFach 2017

February 22nd, 2017|

Our tool for faster and cheaper certification of sustainable natural ingredients During BioFach 2017, we launched our integrated certification tool for suppliers of wild-collected natural ingredients. This tool helps suppliers to assess and certify their supply chains according to multiple sustainability standards at the same time. It includes all protocols to comply with international standards and certifications such as Good Agricultural Collection Practices (GACP), organic, FairWild and fair trade. Each standard demands different documentation sets, but these often overlap. “Certification is a costly and dreading process for suppliers. We designed this tool to make the certification process cheaper and more convenient for suppliers in emerging [...]

ProFound launches certification tool at BioFach 2017

February 22nd, 2017|

Our tool for faster and cheaper certification of sustainable natural ingredients During BioFach 2017, we launched our integrated certification tool for suppliers of wild-collected natural ingredients. This tool helps suppliers to assess and certify their supply chains according to multiple sustainability standards at the same time. It includes all protocols to comply with international standards and certifications such as Good Agricultural Collection Practices (GACP), organic, FairWild and fair trade. Each standard demands different documentation sets, but these often overlap. “Certification is a costly and dreading process for suppliers. We designed this tool to make the certification process cheaper and more convenient for suppliers in emerging [...]

Ethiopian organic honey & beeswax enter European market

February 21st, 2017|

With support of ProFound, Ethiopian honey processors in the ASPIRE programme made great progress over the past three years. They set up organic certified supply chains, installed processing equipment, imported drums for packaging and tackled other export and quality problems in the challenging Ethiopian business environment. COMEL, Yerkisho and Zembaba Union managed to export their first containers of organic certified honey to Europe. These exports are good news for their beekeepers who benefit tremendously from the honey trade. From February 12 to 19, four Ethiopian honey processors and several government representatives visited Germany for a trade mission organised by ProFound. [...]

Improving Kosovo’s food marketing at trade fairs

February 20th, 2017|

In 2016, ProFound engaged with local marketing companies in Kosovo to strengthen their capacities to support food processors. After implementing a series of activities in the food-processing sector in Kosovo, we were ready to equip local providers with the skills needed to sustain future interventions. Like in earlier activities in the country, ProFound trained the Kosovar marketing companies in the framework of Swisscontact’s Promoting Private Sector Employment programme. The activities implemented in this project served to make Kosovar marketing companies more proficient in supporting local food-processing companies in their export marketing ambitions. For ProFound, this trajectory helped us build our capacities in knowledge exchange [...]

ProFound at BioFach: bringing organic suppliers from Africa and Pakistan

January 26th, 2017|

From 15 to 18 February, ProFound will manage the Organic Africa Pavilion with 15 organic suppliers. We will also launch an innovative integrated certification tool with the FairWild Foundation and support three Pakistani suppliers at the CBI stand. Going to BioFach? Read on to see where to find us. 15 suppliers at Organic Africa Pavilion – stand 4-269 The Organic Africa Pavilion is back at BioFach 2017. This year we present 15 suppliers from Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Ghana, Mozambique and Zimbabwe. The exhibitors will bring high quality products from all over the continent. From exciting and innovative products such as baobab, [...]

ProFound´s first verification mission to Vietnam for BioTrade project

January 23rd, 2017|

ProFound consultant Robbie Hogervorst visited Vietnam as part of the Export Potential Assessment for the Regional BioTrade project in Southeast Asia with Helvetas Swiss Intercooperation. At the end of last year, we identified promising BioTrade products from Vietnam, Lao PDR and Myanmar, by assessing their export potential. BioTrade is defined as the trade of products that are native to a country and maintain or enrich its biodiversity. In Vietnam, Robbie and the local Helvetas team verified the outcomes of this research. The team talked to companies and other stakeholders, such as government institutions, through individual interviews and a roundtable. "During [...]

In Memoriam – Klaus Dürbeck

December 20th, 2016|

We are deeply saddened to let you know that Klaus Dürbeck, our dear friend and champion in our Natural Ingredients work, unexpectedly passed away last Friday 16 December 2016. For almost 20 years, he has been our companion in work and lives, and he will be hugely missed. You can read about the great significance of Klaus’ work in this tribute article of Josef Brinckmann. More news on how we intend to continue his legacy as part of our work, will follow at a later stage. Bert-Jan Ottens Director of ProFound

Promising Natural Ingredients in Regional BioTrade Programme Southeast Asia

December 6th, 2016|

ProFound and longstanding partner Klaus Dürbeck Consulting have joined forces with Helvetas Swiss Intercooperation in a SECO-funded Regional BioTrade Programme in Southeast Asia, which started in September 2016. In the first stage of this Programme, we are identifying promising natural ingredients from Vietnam, Lao PDR and Myanmar, by assessing their export potential. Teams in the respective countries are interviewing local companies and stakeholders to provide input from the field. In October 2016, ProFound’s BioTrade expert Bert-Jan Ottens and associate consultant Nuning Barwa travelled to Hanoi to train and prepare these local teams for their fieldwork.   ProFound calculated the Export Potential Index of BioTrade products [...]