Umthunzi Farming Community offers a heart-warming story of how technology can create economic opportunities in South Africa.

Umthunzi Farming Community uses on-the-ground business tools and training to create access to appropriate markets for over 70 small-scale farmers across the Cape Flats.

By selling large quantities of vegetables at a time (both wholesale and to individual consumers), Umthunzi Farming Community has sold more than 150 tons of produce this year, resulting in a sustained and reliable income for the small-scale farmers they partner with.

Kim Bloch, co-founder and director of Umthunzi Farming Community, said, “We are just all trying to ensure that Umthunzi is fulfilling its mission, which is economically empowering small-scale farmers, and making sure that produce is being distributed across the city, filling up people’s homes and bellies with organic, local, seasonal produce.”

How Umthunzi Farming Community empowers small-scale farmers

Umthunzi offers small-scale farmers the opportunity to sell their produce on an online platform, which can be accessed here.

Customers can choose between four product options:

  • Harvest Bags – a mystery bag containing a variety of fresh, seasonal and organic vegetables.
  • Wholesale – bulk quantities of vegetables for restaurants, shops, processors, and catering companies.
  • Wellness – bulk Harvest Bags for businesses or groups to support healthy living and food security.
  • Pantry – a selection of pickles, chilli sauces, dumplings and dog food, amongst other items, all made using Umthunzi produce.

Customers can make their purchases using a variety of digital methods – with the most popular of these being SnapScan.

SnapScan makes it easy to purchase these products, as customers simply scan the code and enter their PIN. This simple payment method, along with the extensive reach that the Internet provides, means small-scale farmers now have a much easier way to sell their produce.

Since its inception, Umthunzi has grown to help over 70 small-scale farmers sell their produce online and has contributed to these farmers receiving almost R3 million in combined income.

Farmers in the Umthunzi network earn 70% of the revenue from all sales Umthunzi makes, ensuring they have enough money to sustain their operations and
livelihoods.

Using technology to change lives The story above is just one example of how modern technology is helping South Africans make a living. SnapScan is proud to be working with organisations such as Umthunzi Farming Community on projects that provide economic relief to the people of our country.