Project completed

The Project 'Biotrade South Africa' will foster the development, branding and export of innovative cosmetics and food products based on indigenous, natural ingredients collected in the wild in an environmentally and biodiversity sustaining manner. New nature-based products have both prospects of high value (thanks to up-scale demand in developed markets) and high employment (due to labour-intensive collection methods). Hence, the sustainable collection of natural ingredients can contribute to both value addition of biodiversity, and thereby its conservation, as well as income generation for rural, disadvantaged population groups. The Project will be implemented by PhytoTrade Africa, a not-for-profit Natural Products Trade Association in Southern Africa.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
South Africa
Sustainable trade
30.05.2012 - 31.12.2015
CHF 2'800'000
Background Current consumption trends favor natural, organic and fair products, i.e. products based on natural ingredients grown and/or collected naturally and manufactured in a responsible and sustainable manner. Collecting natural ingredients - e.g. nuts, berries, roots - is a labor intensive activity without needs for special skills. Biotrade - the trade of products based on natural ingredients - hence provides both a value to nature and income opportunities to rural, disadvantaged communities.
Objectives Biodiversity preservation, trade, income generation are inter-related matters: biodiversity preservation is supported by trade and this in turn leads to increased opportunities and incomes for the people who supply the raw materials in the supply chain. The overall goal is therefore an integrated one: to foster biotrade in innovative consumer products utilizing indigenous natural ingredients to create jobs and incomes, upgrade skills and technology, and preserve the biodiversity in a sustainable manner.
Medium-term outcomes Develop and expand the supply of products from the sustainable harvest of indigenous biodiversity, via product innovation and development.Increase the export readiness of South African brands in local and international markets that highlight the efficacy benefits to rural communities of Biotrade.Bring Biotrade products to export markets, via support in trade regulations and exports.

Expected results:   Increased volume of supply and development of value added and high quality ingredients to meet international demand.Sustained revenue growth and increased product range of South African natural Biotrade brands into local and international markets.Increased consumer and business awareness of the efficacy and ethical/fair trade benefits of Biotrade ingredients, and recognition of PhytoTrade Africa as a Champion for Biotrade.Improved trade environment and compliance with regulations, particularly ABS (access and benefit sharing) under Nagoya protocols.

Directorate/federal office responsible SECO
Credit area Development cooperation
Project partners Contract partner
  • Other private local implementation partner

Budget Current phase Swiss budget CHF   2'800'000 Swiss disbursement to date CHF   0 Budget inclusive project partner CHF   5'600'000
Project phases

Phase 1 30.05.2012 - 31.12.2015   (Completed)