24 Nov Like Mountains
The IDC facilitated the funding of Like Mountains, a rose geranium production farm.
Like Mountains rents a piece of land from a community that received land from the government through the land reform programme. Over the next three years, six young female farmers will be trained to grow essential oil plants and will be given a secured market for their produce. They will also have 33% shareholding in Wilde Natural Oils, the marketing company selling the oil.
The funding was used to establish a 20-hectare rose geranium plantation and to set up the oil production plant. As a certified organic essential oil producer and distiller that employs mostly women, the company endeavours to align with Unesco’s ‘Man in Biopshere’ programme, which aims to improve human livelihoods and the equitable sharing of benefits, while rehabilitating managed ecosystems and protecting natural spaces.
Like Mountains has also started a skills development programme that will establish six young female farmers as contracted growers over the next three years. By specialising in the cultivation and distillation of indigenous essential oils, Like Mountains promotes an innovative approach to economic development that is socially and culturally appropriate, and environmentally sustainable. The project employs 18 permanent workers.