Resurrection bush tea - creating rural income in Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe's rural poor live in driest areas where agriculture is constrained yet abundant local plants can provide a liveable income for them

Photo of Avril Harvey
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Written by

I confirm that I am fully aware of the eligibility criteria, and based on its description, I am eligible to apply to the CSV Prize 2017.

  • Yes, I'm eligible

Preferred language

  • English

Organization name

Parceval Pty Ltd

Year founded


Initiative stage

  • Start-Up (a pilot that has just started operating)

Annual budget in 2017 (USD)

  • Less than $1k

Number of beneficiaries impacted so far

  • 1 - 10

Organization type

  • Social enterprise

Secondary Focus Area

  • Rural development
  • Nutrition

Headquarters location: Country

  • South Africa

Headquarters location: City

We are based in Wellington, an agricultural town outside Cape Town, partnered with NGO / Trust based in Harare, Zimbawe

Location(s) of impact

Zimbabwe: Chivi, Matopos


Problem: What problem is this initiative trying to address?

Herbal teas market has grown rapidly over the last few years and is worth $1 billion in the US. international clients demand new exciting ingredients from Africa, with great flavour, health and wellbeing properties and regarded as safe, as well as a great back story. We have found such an ingredient in Resurrection bush. It is used to flavour food, as a tea, has documented evidence as a remedy for colds, flu, chest pains, clearing skin. At the same time Resurrection bush is found abundantly where rural women can harvest

Solution Summary: What is the proposed solution? What do you see as its most promising aspects for creating shared value?

Our solution is for Resurrection bush to become recognized as a product of Zimbabwe in the international market similar to Honeybush and Sceletium –as a pure tea / tea blends With a larger volume demand for Resurrection bush, large scale collection will supplement collectors income, increasing income from $100 to $480 per year in some cases, without taking away the ability to feed their families or to grow cash crops. Already we are involved in promoting indigenous crops for wider use in Zimbabwe - indigenous / wild harvested crops demand less water, are easily accessible and can be commercialised to a wider market with minimal input cost and effort. We intend to commercialise a number of products out of Zimbabwe that are locally known but could attract a wider international audience. These indigenous plants are well known in Zimbabwe for their health benefits but in order to get onto the international market will need comprehensive clinical and safety data.

Impact: What is the impact of the work to date? Specify both the social and the environmental impact of your work

An indigenous plant, resurrection bush, grows in abundance in areas where rural communities live. Local regulations allow rural communities to access and even commercialise this plant, resource mapping has shown that the available wild population can sustain the small existing market – and propagation studies have already been planned with UZ should the market expand. With the extra income derived from wild harvesting, rural women will be able to support their families with more than the income from vegetables and small crops only, and will be able to earn a wage from wild harvesting that will supplement household income substantially. In Zimbabwe, cash is hard to come by and banks are limiting withdrawals by individuals - the ability to earn cash or barter with other nutritional commodities is vital for women to feed their children and families.

Financial sustainability plan: How is this initiative financially supported? How will you ensure its financial sustainability long-term?

2, Grant of ZAR 1 million received from Finnish - Southern African Partnership Programme BioFISA II 3. Corporate contributions ZAR142,875 4. Earned income ZAR50,000

Unique value proposition: What makes your initiative innovative? How does your project differ from other organizations working in the same field?

Unlike other suppliers, Parceval ensures it has first mover advantage on material which is carefully selected; supply chains are compliant with all local and international regulatory requirements; and biggest competitive advantage is the supply chain can be organically certified from source and UTZ certified. This ensures Parceval can charge a premium for its product. Through controlling the supply chain together with BIZ, we ensure that indigenous plants remain abundant in the environment

Founding story: Share a story about the "Aha!" moment that sparked the beginning of this initiative.

We were initially looking at the Resurrection bush for its properties as a cosmetic - anti ageing, anti pollutant, however, during research we learnt about its use as a herbal tea , both as a remedy for colds and flu, and other ailments as well as for taste and enjoyment. We were attracted to the idea of developing an indigenous tea to compare in antioxidant properties with Rooibos, which is not indigenous to Zimbabwe, but is widely available nevertheless. This could even grow into a competitor in the South African market for Rooibos with the correct safety data and marketing.

Where did you hear about the Nestlé Creating Shared Value Prize?

  • Upon recommendation from others


Join the conversation:

Photo of Mouhamadou Moustapha Seck

Very interesting initiative.

Photo of Bryan Raveen Nelson

Dear Avril Harvey,

I just went through your application and really liked your idea. Your project is a needed initiative for vulnerable communities. The idea in this project is very original and your effort is very genuine. Keep up the good work.

May I request some of your time to also evaluate the initiative constructed by our team because it lies in page three and up to now poor attention was received. To find the application, you will have to Select ‘‘PHASE> Prize entry’’. On the right section of page, under the heading ‘‘FOCUS AREAS’’ click on "WATER". Go to Page 3> Click "Evaluate" on application titled "Turning the tables for Temiar tribe of Malaysia". I would also appreciate if you either applaud us or leave a comment on our page if you deem us worthy.

Thank you very much.

Photo of Avril Harvey

Your idea seems good - and it is scalable I guess? If you deem my project worthy I would also appreciate it if you would evaluate it...

Photo of Bryan Raveen Nelson

Hi Avril Harvey,

Certainly. @contribution to the impacted communities is a very good initiative to allow them become resourceful and economically resilient. May I know how did you get the background knowledge on this miracle bush tree? Have you been working on herbs and plant. Great work and you will be blessed.

Photo of Avril Harvey

Yes, my company Parceval, is a herbal pharmaceutical and cosmetics manufacturer - we source African botanicals such as Resurrection bush, for international companies. The founder, Ulrich Feiter is very knowledgeable about medicinal plants, was involved in setting up the African Plants pharmacopaeia and is considered an expert on Nagoya protocol and bioprospecting in South Africa.

Photo of Bryan Raveen Nelson

I see. Rarely people have knowledge on traditional herbal plants and its usefulness in the present era.

Photo of Avril Harvey

Thanks for your comments

Photo of Diego Santana

Great proyect! It´s nice how the private sector impacts in the communities for the develop of the new crop!