From innovative off-grid mobile solar power stations to the polymerised bitumen roads from recycled plastic - Meet the 2016 SEED Award Winners
At SEED's largest annual international forum, the SEED Africa Symposium, SEED announced the 20 winners of the 2016 SEED Awards, today. These 20 outstanding eco-inclusive enterprises will be honoured during the international SEED Award Ceremony this evening.The SEED Awards recognise innovative eco-inclusive enterprises whose businesses help to meet the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). By helping them to scale-up their activities, SEED aims to boost local economies and tackle poverty. SEED puts a strong focus on enabling global and local multi-stakeholder partnerships between governments, the private sector and the civil society, while promoting the sustainable use of resources and ecosystems.
Each SEED Award Winner will receive technical assistance, free access to different supporting institutions, and tailor-made support to develop their business and skills. They will also join a network of more than 200 eco-inclusive enterprises that have received the award so far. SEED provides a platform for networking and partnerships, bringing together a diverse group of enterprises, researchers, investors, policymakers and members of civil society.
The 2016 call for applications received an outstanding number of 515 applications from the nine focus countries of 2016 SEED Awards: Burkina Faso, Ghana, Kenya, Mauritius, Malawi, Namibia, South Africa and Uganda. Most of the applications were in sustainable agricultural and rural development, energy, waste management and manufacturing of sustainable products. At the same time, these enterprises were involved in education, skill training and rural women and youth empowerment.
Small and growing businesses in developing countries are helping drive green economies, and are vital to achieving global goals for green growth. The 2016 SEED Winners are exceptional examples of entrepreneurial talent that not only support green growth goals, but inspire other individuals and businesses to contribute as well. From innovative waste management in Mauritius to solar power deployment in Burkina Faso, SEED Winners are driving their local and national economies toward resource efficiency, and growing Africa as a hub of sustainability innovation.- Erik Solheim, Head of UN Environment
The 2016 SAG-SEED Award Winners
Fifteen SAG-SEED Awards in Burkina Faso, Ghana, Kenya, Mauritius, South Africa and Uganda are sponsored by the SWITCH-Africa Green (SAG) project, which is implemented by UNEP with the assistance of the European Union:
SWITCH-Africa Green is implemented by UNEP with the assistance of the European Union. The European Union is made up of 28 Member States who have decided to gradually link together their know-how, resources and destinies. Together, during a period of enlargement of 50 years, they have built a zone of stability, democracy and sustainable development whilst maintaining cultural diversity, tolerance and individual freedoms. The European Union is committed to sharing its achievements and its values with countries and peoples beyond its borders.
Jardin Green Hope uses innovative manufacturing processes to convert water hyacinths and organic waste into quality natural fertilisers. By adding value to organic waste, the company supplies farmers with cheaper inputs, allowing them to increase their revenues and regenerate their soils.
Sahelia Solar is a leading solar company in Burkina Faso and now starting to provide solar energy systems to off-grid agro-processing plants managed by rural cooperatives. The pay-as-you go model provides people in rural areas with readily available, reliable, and affordable energy.
Eco-Shoes hires and trains physically disabled artisans to manufacture durable and versatile footwear made from upcycled tires and fabric waste, thereby empowering the disabled and lifting them out of poverty, while at the same time reducing waste.
City Waste Recycling Ltd offers responsible waste processing for a wide range of waste types from problematic e-waste and batteries to sawdust and plastic. It provides formal employment lifting waste collectors out of the informal sector.
Unique Quality Product Enterprise represents the first business in Ghana that adds value to Fonio, a neglected, indigenous and nutritious cereal crop that grows well on unfertilised marginal land. The company mobilises and supports rural women to cultivate Fonio, processes and markets the products.
Farmerline provides information and services needed by farmers like best agronomic practices, weather data, literacy training and market prices through its developed mobile software technology. The localized data help transform smallholder farmers into successful entrepreneurs and mitigate some of the harmful effects from climate change.
Safi Organics provides organic fertiliser for rural smallholder farmers that contributes to soil carbon storage. The Safi Sarvi® blend is derived from various types of local organic farm waste, and is transformed into soil conditioner through low-cost production.
The 2016 SEED Winners are living the SDGs. With their innovative business models, they are improving local livelihoods while conserving natural resources. Their businesses rely on strong multi-stakeholder partnerships at the local level, a success factor UNDP is building upon internationally to implement the Sustainable Development Goals.
- Helen Clark, Head of UN Development
Green Road Ltd is piloting the construction of polymerised bitumen roads from recycled plastic and asphalt. They provide marginalised groups with employment in plastic collection and reduce the amount of plastic waste that would have otherwise ended up in landfills or be incinerated.
Magiro Hydro Electricity Limited (MHEL) uses modified bicycle parts and simple motors to generate hydropower from a local waterfall, supplying inexpensive, renewable energy to rural village residents who otherwise would use kerosene and firewood.
Belle Verte aims to create a national closed loop waste management system and raises awareness on the need to reuse and recycle waste through creative workshops. Within a collaborative process, diverse stakeholders collect, sort and upcycle all types of waste products.
Green Acre Living provides organic farming training to emerging farmers in urban areas and promotes the establishment of urban food micro-enterprises. The focus is on biodiversity, promoting indigenous foods and increasing organic production to achieve food security.
SolarTurtle converts shipping containers into mobile solar power stations and solar kiosks called “Turtles”. The company empowers women entrepreneurs to operate these secure fold-away power stations in order to sell clean and affordable energy to off-grid schools, clinics and individual community members.
Tii Ki Komi Cassava Commercial Growers produces cassava and processes it into chips, flour and peels of high quality. While improving the socio-economic conditions of the population, the enterprise contributes to sustainable agriculture.
YICEUganda provides rural smallholder farmers in Uganda with flexible farm loans, inputs and training services to reduce hunger and poverty. With its network of local farm agents, YICEUganda facilitates farmers’ access to bundled agricultural services at various levels of the farming value chain.
SPOUTS manufactures and supplies an affordable ceramic water filter, called the Purifaaya, which is made with local resources and materials easily found in Uganda. SPOUTS is the sole manufacturer of water filtration products in Uganda.
The 2016 Gender Equality Award Winner
The SEED Gender Equality Award in Kenya is sponsored by the SWITCH-Africa Green project, which is implemented by UNEP with the assistance of the European Union with an additional support is provided by Hogan Lovells.
Hogan Lovells is one of the largest international business legal practices, with over seven thousand people operating from 40 offices in Europe, Asia and the United States. The firm advises many of the world's largest corporations, financial institutions and government organisations. They regularly act on complex, multi-jurisdictional transactions and commercial disputes.
Dagoretti Market Biogas Latrine is a female-run, community-based initiative that uses renewable energy options (biogas and solar) to address multiple community needs in sanitation and energy under one roof.
Since IUCN co-founded SEED in 2002, the partnership has come a long way in supporting eco-inclusive enterprises worldwide. More than 200 SEED Winners around the globe have found solutions to turn the conservation of natural resources into sustainable livelihoods for their local communities. With great pleasure I welcome 20 new innovative eco-enterprises from Africa to this group of frontrunners for sustainable development.
- Inger Andersen, Director General IUCN
The 2016 SEED Africa Award Winners
Four SEED Africa Awards in Malawi, Mozambique and Namibia are sponsored by the Government of Flanders:
The Government of Flanders is active in Malawi, Mozambique and South Africa. It works not only with the local authorities, but also with indirect actors such as NGOs, research institutes and international organizations. In South Africa, the focus is on job creation through Small Enterprise Development, and improving food security through smallholder farming.
Chonona produces diverse fish products in an integrated aquaculture approach. While the production aims at closing the natural resource cycle, Chonona integrates the local community into the supply of inputs, marketing and fish processing.
Sustainable Options facilitates the wide distribution of solar lighting technology to the rural population of Malawi. By providing training and promoting self-financing schemes of local youth associations, the enterprise acts as a facilitator between suppliers and customers and promotes entrepreneurship in rural Malawi.
Ziweto Enterprise provides rural livestock smallholders with access to veterinary advice and other animal health products and services. Through a franchising model, Ziweto enables entrepreneurs to establish agro-veterinary shops, improving the livelihood of underserved communities in rural Malawi.
Mashandilo is a co-operative of smallholder farmers committed to improving its members’ market integration by promoting resource-efficient innovation in agriculture production and providing a wide range of member services.