Rural soap manufacturers crowned 2014 Female Entrepreneur of the year award winners


In the current economic times which are militating against the survival of start ups, success stories deserve recognition.

Indeed, when the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries awarded a group of women entrepreneurs in the North West the Female Entrepreneur Award for 2014 no one disputed the decision. Theirs was a product of industry, focus and innovation.

The women from the Gopane village in the Ngaka Modiri Molema district, operating as The Kopanang Primary Agricultural Co-operative, clinched the first prize R1 million in the processing category.

The women’s work is innovation par excellence. Instead of moaning about government’s failure to assist them and waiting for handouts, the five women teamed up and decided to produce soap bars. They collect animal fat from the local abattoirs and at local events, which they process to produce bars of soap that are approved by the South African Bureau of Standards. Their products are sold within the local communities, around and outside the province.

The women’s triumph demonstrates that one does not have to live in Gauteng Province to create a successful enterprise.

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