As part of the support to their Business Support Organisation (BSO) partners, SIPPO SA and the GQSP-SA project, facilitated the virtual two-day workshop, which was attended by a number of officials from five BSOs.
The overall objective of the workshop was to strengthen the services of the BSOs for their SME companies active in the Natural Ingredients sector. Furthermore, to increase export market access for existing and potential South African Natural Ingredients suppliers, to penetrate the European and global food and cosmetic sectors.
During the workshop, the SIPPO international senior sector expert from the Natural Ingredients sector shared his knowledge and insights with the BSO participants to enable them to assist their companies to define their value propositions. Topics covered included market information/trends and opportunities, as well as market compliance requirements to enter the European market.
The growing importance of environmental issues, changes in consumer and lifestyles, as well as the growing demand for organic products and indigenous African ingredients in natural health products in Europe, were highlighted as sector trends. The sector expert also guided the participants on how to support their companies in identifying markets and potential buyers for their essential and vegetable oils.
The outcomes of the workshop were to firstly expand/strengthen the BSOs’ service portfolio, including analysing the competitiveness of the South African offer for natural ingredients, as well as institutionalising the acquired knowledge and skills within these organisations. This will enable the BSOs to apply and transfer the knowledge to their members for sales and communication activities, such as Study Tours or Trade Fair participation in Europe.