Setting Quality standards for Baobab Produce
Current regulations on the quality of Baobab fruit powder were set too low in many areas, as standards were developed many years ago when the industry was less experienced and still in an early stage of its development. Therefor plenty of poor-quality powder is now traded around the globe, destroying the trust into the quality of Baobab products among customers and makes it difficult to argue higher prices for higher quality powder. To improve this situation the African Baobab Alliance will develop an own, higher quality standard.
Next to the development of an own quality standard the African Baobab Alliance also aims for the development of an efficient authentication method for Baobab powder to prevent the Baobab powder to be cut with cheaper powders (e.g. Maltodextrin) to drop prices. Current methods, including chromatographic or mass spectroscopic methods, seem to be too expensive and can often just be carried out by very specialist laboratories. Therefore R&D has to be carried out to find more suitable analyzing methods (e.g. Mineralprofile, profile of Phytochemicals etc.).
Supporting Baobab Harvester
Not only industry partners will gain a benefit from the work of the African Baobab Alliance. Also harvester will benefit from the quality standards set by the ABA, as they will now be able to argue purchase prices based on them. With the establishment of the qualitly standards also the demand from producers will increase, which will benefit harvester furthermore.
Improving the competitiveness and sustainability of the Baobab Industry
Together with our university and business partners, we have a strong knowledge base, giving us the chance to directly implement research results into practice and thereby increase the competitiveness and sustainability of baobab businesses.
Besides that, we promote research on the health benefits and on further application possibilites of Baobab fruitpowder and oil, so producers are able to use a larger pallet of health and nutritional claims for there marketing and thereby to push the demand for baobab raw materials within the food and cosmetic industry even further.
Growing the demand for baobab in local and international food and cosmetic markets
The low demand for baobab is one of the urgent problems of the baobab industry and has many different causes.
First of all, there are too little scientific studies that focus on the beneficial health effects of the consumption of baobab fruit pulp. This makes it difficult for Baobab companies to prove health and nutritional claims on a label and it therefore difficult for the baobab powder to compete with other Superfoods in the supermarket shelves. Especially when it comes to its pre- and probiotic features and capabilities of the fruit pulp there should be more scientific research, as these features could be the main USP towards other superfoods on the market. The African Baobab Alliance therefor aims to promote more research on the health benefits of baobab fruit powder.
Another reason for low demand for Baobab powder is the appearance is not characteristic enough. It is white and dissolves in most products and the existence of it in a product can thereby often not easily be recognized by the consumer. That’s why it is difficult for the baobab powder to add value to a product, when it is not specifically indicated on a label that it is present.
Furthermore, B2B customers don’t want to explain to their customers everything about the baobab. They want that the customer already knows what the baobab is and how to use it. Till today many customers don’t know the baobab fruit and its characteristics. Same holds true for many Manufactures, which are not using Baobab, because of a lack of know-how.
The African Baobab Alliance therefor wants to create generic Marketing Campaigns to raise awareness of the baobab among the public. In addition, the African Baobab Alliance aims to combine their product know-how to provide Manufactures with suggestions for how to apply baobab into existing as well as new products.