Rose Atieno is the founder of BountyNut, a local business from Mathare that produces and sells organic peanut butter. She is part of Somo’s 4th Cohort and we are excited to see what she is able to do now that she has qualified for Somo investment!
Starting her peanut business was by coincidence. One of Rose’s family members was sick and the doctor gave them the advice to eat natural peanut butter. Checking several supermarkets, Rose and her family could not find any natural ones available. Rose remembered her grandma who used to make natural peanut butter and how she produced it and decided to give it a try. Her family loved the peanut butter so much that even when everyone in her family was healthy again, Rose kept on making the natural peanut butter. Then some of her neighbors got interested and so Rose and her family decided to start selling the peanut butter to the community, providing people with an affordable, organic and delicious protein source.
To produce the peanut butter, Rose first roasts the peanuts together with salt for a couple of hours. This is done manually without any support of a machine. In the second step, Rose grinds the roasted peanuts with her own grinding machine. Due to the current political situation in Kenya, sales are lower compared to previous months and so she is only producing peanut butter about three to four times a week. In times of high demand, however, she produces peanut butter everyday. These changing demands are her main challenge in the business at the moment. With the investment of Somo, Rose plans to buy a roasting machine which allows her to increase production further and react faster to changing demands. To expand her business, Rose is in the process to get an official permission by Kenya Bureau of Standards (KEBS), verifying that her peanut butter fulfills Kenyan food standards. This will allow her to sell her peanut butter in supermarkets and local shops. Rose also wants to open a shop in Mathare. At the moment, she still sells her peanut butter from her apartment, since people in her community know her peanut butter by now and many may drop by to get one. So she always make sure “to have a sufficient supply at home”.
Rose not only produces peanut butter but also offers training to other people who are interested in making peanut butter. So far, Rose has shown three people how to make peanut butter. She did these trainings for free to give back to the community. Since these people don't have grinding machines, they come back to Rose's place. Rose charges them a little fee for using the machine, providing her with an additional income from BountyNut.
Asking Rose if there is anything she may regret about her business, her prompt and clear answer is: “Yes, I wished I would have started BountyNut earlier”. Her business contributes to a stable income for Rose and her family making her an equal contributor in the household as her husband.
If you want to try Rose's Bountiful peanut butter, come and get one from Somo's PopUp store or place your order online with us: popupshopkenya.com!