Thirty members of the Burkina Faso chapter of the African Women’s Entrepreneurship Program (AWEP) attended a three-day training-of-trainers workshop in the capital Ouagadougou on how best to process and sell high-quality shea butter in local, national and international markets.
These thirty participants are AWEP’s focal points in Burkina Faso’s 13 regions and are expected to cascade skills learned to members in their respective regions.
The Trade Hub partnered with RPBHC, a Burkinabé producers cooperative network, and a partner of the Global Shea Alliance, to enhance the processing skills of shea butter processors.
From July 5-7, the shea processors from Burkina Faso’s 13 regions learned how to use traditional and modern equipment to process shea butter—and then compared the quality of the final products. Participants learned quality-management systems for ensuring safe and sanitary production processes. The trainers also discussed organic agriculture to sustain the shea trees and ensure supplies of the raw material.
The coordinator of AWEP Burkina Faso, Mrs. Kone, said Burkinabé women shea collectors mostly sell shea kernels to buyers from neighboring countries, who process the butter and resell to women in Burkina Faso at expensive prices.
“With this training, we hope to be able to make quality butter that can sell even on the international market,” Mrs. Kone said.
AWEP Burkina Faso will use skills acquired at this training workshop and the recent labelling and packaging workshop to produce quality shea butter products for an exhibition at the upcoming AGOA Forum in Lomé, Togo, August 8-10.