Turning Pits into Profit: MEDA Provides Grant to T&M to Process Mango Pits into Cosmetics, Unlocking New Jobs for Women  

Mango processing facility in Senegal.
A new processing line at T&M (Balanta Cosmetics) will transform mango pits into mango butter for the cosmetics industry.

Baconding, Senegal, June 28, 2024 – Today, an opening ceremony to celebrate a new, scaled-up processing line that transforms mango pits into mango butter for the cosmetics industry will take place in Baconding, Senegal, with the aim of unlocking more jobs for women. T&M (Balanta Cosmetics) received a matching grant to purchase the equipment from Mennonite Economic Development Associates (MEDA) and the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT) under the Adaptation and Valorization of Entrepreneurship in Irrigated Agriculture (AVENIR) project, funded by the Government of Canada.  

The innovative system will reduce food waste by turning normally discarded mango pits into profitable products such as shampoo and skin moisturizer and is expected to considerably reduce T&M’s post-harvest losses caused by whiteflies. Through a combination of technical assistance and access to capital from the AVENIR project, T&M was able to invest in the new machinery. T&M is a leading agri-food and agro-cosmetics company in the mango sector of the Sédhiou region. The enterprise currently employs 15 staff and has doubled the number of women smallholder farmers it works with from 250 to 500. With its new processing capacity, T&M aims to create an additional 301 decent jobs by 2027.  

“The T&M (Balanta Cosmetics) mango butter processing line we are visiting today together with Ms. Marie-Geneviève Mounier, Canadian Ambassador to Senegal, was acquired with support from the AVENIR project matching grant mechanism,” said Dr. Pierre Kadet, MEDA’s Senior Regional Director for West and Central Africa. “This equipment will not only contribute to the T&M business plan to create or sustain decent jobs for women and reduce post-harvest losses, but also to the Senegalese Government’s priorities for agro-industrial development.”  

“Canada is very proud to have financed T&M’s mango butter processing unit in the value of 24 million CFA francs through the AVENIR project. This company works to create wealth and employment for rural women in the region. I am impressed by their business model, which has developed with a vision and values of commitment that are fully in line with those of Canada and our Feminist International Assistance Policy,” said Marie-Geneviève Mounier, Ambassador of Canada to Senegal. 

Dr. Augustina Ephraim, CEO of Balanta Cosmetics shared that “with this new production line, we are getting even closer to our dream of drastically reducing post-harvest losses in the mango sector in Casamance. Producing a pure mango butter that is highly sought after by the cosmetics market at the same time is the icing on the cake for us. This initiative not only allows us to utilize every part of the fruit but also creates economic opportunities for local communities while meeting the growing demand for natural and high-quality cosmetic products.” 

The Ambassador of Canada to Senegal, the Commissioner of District of Goudomp (Prefet), the Mayor of Djibanar, the district level representative of the Ministry of Agriculture Food Sovereignty and Livestock, AVENIR project clients and stakeholders, and traditional and religious leaders will join the celebratory event.  

Through the AVENIR project, MEDA and CIAT, along with 14 local partners, have provided financial incentives and introduced best agricultural practices focused on climate-smart agriculture, nutrition, and business linkages to 14 agribusinesses and five lead firms in the regions of Sédhiou and Tambacounda in Senegal. From 2019-2026, the AVENIR project aims to improve the socioeconomic well-being and resilience of 11,500 women and youth in the country and is part of MEDA’s broader strategy to improve agri-food market systems in the Global South.  

For media inquiries, please contact Paulin Bossou, MEDA’s Country Project Manager for Senegal, at pbossou@meda.org 

MEDA – Mennonite Economic Development Associates – is an international economic development organization that creates business solutions to poverty. Our programs and investments contribute to the transformation of agricultural systems to create and maintain decent job opportunities for women and youth. Since 1953, MEDA has advanced agricultural transformation in 79 countries. Learn more at https://www.meda.org  



  • MEDA (Mennonite Economic Development Associates)

    MEDA is an international economic development organization that creates business solutions to poverty. We work in agri-food market systems, focusing primarily on women and youth in rural communities in the Global South. Our success is measured by income, improved processes, increased knowledge, and the creation of decent work.

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