This week's Six Questions are with the makers of Ubuntu, who have been working since 2007 to bring a more ethical cola to our tables. Ubuntu was the UK's first Fairtrade cola, and they've been supporting Fairtrade sugar farmers in Malawi and Zambia ever since. Buying Ubuntu means supporting farmers as well as educational, medical and infrastructure projects that are funded by the extra premium paid to these farming communities. In our second week of Fairtrade Fortnight, we hear a bit more about the company behind Ubuntu, the Natural Beverage Co.
1.How/why and when did you start your business?
The Natural Beverage Company was started in 2006. Leonard who is the business owner is from a farming background himself and is passionate about supporting Fairtrade farmers as is everyone who works at Natural Beverage. The Natural Beverage company only produces Fairtrade drinks so we know we are supporting Fairtrade farmers with every drink we produce!
2. What advice would you give to someone starting a new business in the sector?
Be passionate about your products and believe in them, make sure you share your story. It’s a big sector so keep trying and believing and don’t give up!
3. What motivates you?
Knowing that we are making products that are helping people live a better life by buying their Fairtrade products.The Food and drink industry is a great one to work in… I mean who doesn’t like eating and drinking and tasting new things! I love it when people discover our drinks and love them!
4. How do you think the food & drinks industry could improve?
I think there should be more support for small businesses. Factories that offer small production runs are becoming increasingly more difficult to find in the UK and of course it is more expensive to produce small runs so it is difficult to be competitive on price. The food industry could do more to drive awareness of ethical options and push for more businesses to offer a range of ethical products so consumers at least have the choice to buy them wherever they choose to shop or eat!
5. Is there an individual or organisation, current or in the past, who inspires you?
David Attenborough is an inspiration to me for not only working his way up the ranks with in the BBC but for the millions of people he has educated and inspired to understand and take care of the natural world… and is still inspiring at 92 years old!
6. Apart from Greencity, which other three or more people, living or deceased, would you invite to make a dinner party entertaining?
- Freddie Mercury
- Miranda Hart
- James Cordon