This month marks our 5 year anniversary of sending a DLG Naturals team over to the other side of the pond! We needed our feet on the ground in Botswana for quite some time and finally made the big move. So in January 2016, our African factory initiative began. Oh, how far we have come!
When embarking on a semi-permanent adventure to Botswana, the unknown was overwhelming. An Airbnb was booked, but our long-term living quarters were undefined–which was far from reassuring. Our future factory site and workspace began as an unpowered storage facility situated in an under developed land plot. We had minimal knowledge of the Botswana bureaucracy, and a to-do list that grew by the second. While the unknown was exciting, it was equally intimidating.
That to-do list never seems to get smaller, but what progress we’ve made! We are close friends with the family of Botswana’s ambassador to the United States. Our connections throughout southern Africa span literally thousands miles and people. We navigated a bureaucratic system ranked 150th for ease of starting a business. Our once dilapidated plot of land has grown to support full production and a dozen employees. We’ve established a wild harvesting network that delivers fair wages to thousands living in rural poverty and gained one of the first organic certifications in the country.
That first year in 2016 was a trial for our Botswana team. Our unprecedented growth since then, however, all sprouted from those challenges. Our love and knowledge of Botswana runs deep and has rewarded us with its limitless beauty, connections, and resources. Happy 5 year anniversary!