Henriette Nyirantwari, a widow and resident of Cyanika sector in Nyamagabe district confesses to have socially and economically developed through making jam and juice from fruits.
Henriette Nyirantwari with bottled fruit jam
Nyirantwari uses a collection of fruits ; strawberries, paw paws, pineapples, plums, guavas and other fruits that she buys with fruit growers in the swamp who used to supply fruits to configi cooperative that used to make fruit jams.
Apart from fruit jam, she makes juice from strawberries, prunes and pineapples.
Also she makes washing soap, and cooking oil from kana flowers. All these products are sold to supermarkets in Butare town and Kigali city.
Nyirantwari started in 2000 after completing her food science course at KIST: “I started making juice for immediate use because I had no preservatives. I started attending trade fairs and slowly by slowly I started making fruit jam,” adds Nyirantwari.
“To expand my business and make enough jam, I need a lot of money to buy bottles, fruits from farmers because they cannot give me their produce without paying them immediately. Where I supply my products, they don’t pay me there and then,” Nyirantwari laments.
She claims that people prefer juice from Uganda than hers because it’s a bit cheap which reduces on her customers. One litre bottle of Nyirantwari undiluted juice costs Rwf4,000 and it’s natural.
I have bought factory materials worth Rwf7 million, built houses where I work from worth Rwf25 million and I take care of my family as a single mother, explains Nyirantwari.
Nyirantwari aspires to expand her factory, buy a vehicle to transport her products and hopes to start making biscuits which she has already bought flour for using.