Banunga

Peel back hunger!

Banunga is a noodle made from green banana flour, providing a novel use for the excess crop grown by Ugandan farmers.

Use Case

Banunga brings together beneficiaries from the farm to your plate. Through promoting the use of sustainable agricultural practices, paying fair trade prices, and encouraging farmers to continue producing existing green banana crops, we are making farmers our primary beneficiary. Through a guarantee of livable wages and equitable working standards, the production of Banunga hopes to benefit individual Ugandan farmers and further stimulate the Ugandan economy. Lastly, Banunga provides a healthy meal base for all consumers, whether they are in Uganda or elsewhere through the use of organic, sustainable ingredients. For individuals who are gluten intolerant, lacking potassium, or food insecure, Banunga is a nutritious substitute, which can augment individual diets in a healthy manner.

Potential

Our concept is innovative as it is founded on the potential of the widely available crop of green bananas in Uganda. Transforming the green bananas into flour then creating noodles gives local farmers a new market for their crop and greater income potential. The production of our product, Banunga, provides increased job opportunities for local Ugandans to work outside the agricultural sector. Not only is Banunga a filling alternative to other starches, it also addresses the problem of chronic potassium deficiency. After our product is successfully launched in Uganda, we plan to expand our markets to the U.S. and Europe. In addition, we also hope to expand our production to other countries suffering from food insecurity.

Business Case

Banunga's business model includes both the producer and the consumer. We seek to increase green banana production by leveraging existing partnerships with NGOs and other organizations to reach farmers. Furthermore, we will reach producers and consumers through nonprofits such as USAID, Feed the Future, One Acre Fund, and the government agency in charge of agriculture (NAADS).  Banunga will then be manufactured by hiring local people to create the product. Upon product creation, we will target food insecure consumers to purchase the product at affordable prices. After developing Banunga in Uganda, we will export it to higher income countries such as the US. Eventually, we seek to expand and recreate this model in other countries where green bananas are already cultivated, such as Brazil.

Objectives:

  1. To create an innovative, nutritious product using locally sourced ingredients in Uganda.
  2. To empower subsistence farmers in Uganda by providing a new market for the widely grown crop of bananas.
  3. To provide a nutritious and affordable alternative to be used in the place of rice or less nutritious forms of pasta.

Team Maisha Mazuri

Durham, United States of America

Our Team

Banunga Infographic / Published January 14, 2017 by Lindy Reynolds

Banunga Infographic

Our Mission

At Banunga, our goal is to create innovative solutions to intractable problems while striving to empower those that have historically been neglected. We work to provide opportunities while expanding our business with sustainability at the heart of each endeavor. Ultimately, we will grow our concept based on the same honesty and integrity it was founded on always with those we seek to empower at the center of each decision.

Our Background

We are a group of graduate and undergraduate students at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina who are pursuing degrees in global health. All of us are currently taking a course on Global Nutrition, where throughout the semester we have been learning about undernutrition, maternal and child nutrition, obesity, food security and global nutrition policies. Additionally, we watched several documentaries on food security, both in the US and abroad. The personal stories of the people in the documentaries combined with lectures and readings have motivated us to seek an innovative way to help address the issue of food insecurity. Our professor informed us about the Thought for Food Challenge, and we felt that it would be the best way to learn more about malnutrition and food insecurity, as well as come up with a solution to a problems that we care deeply about. Our team is comprised of 5 people with diverse backgrounds and interests. One of our team members is from Uganda and another team member has travelled there. With ties to Uganda, we began to explore ways in which we could address food security within the country. We sought to form a business model which will stimulate Uganda’s economy, while employing and empowering individuals in the local communities. Our goal was to to come up with an idea that will address multiple parts of a very complex issue. Banunga accomplishes this goal by having multiple beneficiaries while addressing the central problem of food insecurity in a nation that has historically struggled with this issue. We sought to create a fair-trade, inclusive product to ensure that the people producing the product also benefit from it. As the creators of Banunga, we created a sustainable and feasible solution to help alleviate food insecurity while stimulating the economy and improving the livelihoods of many Ugandan farmers. We are peeling back hunger one banana at a time!

Banunga Infographic / Published January 14, 2017 by Lindy Reynolds

Banunga Infographic

Our Team

Our Mission

At Banunga, our goal is to create innovative solutions to intractable problems while striving to empower those that have historically been neglected. We work to provide opportunities while ...Read More

Our Background

We are a group of graduate and undergraduate students at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina who are pursuing degrees in global health. All of us are currently ...Read More

The information contained here represents student project ideas developed as the result of brainstorming activities during Round 1 of the TFF Challenge. It does not represent any final business plans or commercial products.