** View our Proudly Made in Africa animation video here **
Proudly Made in Africa (PMIA)
Proudly Made in Africa (formerly Value Added in Africa) is a not-for-profit organisation that facilitates and promotes ethical trading of African goods. Based in Dublin with a second office in London, the NGO was founded in 2008 and currently operates across Europe, acting as a trade facilitator between producers of African shelf-ready products and international retailers.
African countries have vast resources for producing high quality products for trade in the international market. But historically this has not happened and there has been a focus on exports of raw commodities rather than finished goods. Ready-to-retail products such as teabags can command a price as much as seven times higher than in raw tea leaf form and it is now recognised that trade on so-called “value-added” products can reduce poverty by offering producers better prices for their goods. Increasingly, business leaders realise that their companies have a crucial role to play in accelerating sustainable development in Africa and are developing market-based approaches with this in mind. Africa is changing and now there are goods and services manufactured within the continent, by producers who act responsibly and trade fairly. This means that more income is generated for local African communities.
PMIA works with products in the fashion and food sectors and we award the PMIA label to African products in these categories that satisfy our quality and ethical standards. Our award acknowledges African goods that are:
- Quality Assured
- Ethically Sourced
- Manufactured in Africa using locally sourced materials
- Socially Beneficial
What We Do
PMIA has created a unique sourcing map of African finished products and our database presently consists of over 500 suppliers across Sub-Saharan Africa. We work with businesses that are interested in taking the next step to the export market. We help them take that step in a number of ways:
Marketing: We aim to create a market in the EU for African products by matching selected companies with suitable buyers at wholesale and retail level, representing African brands at tradeshows in the EU, arranging face-to-face meetings with buyers and pitching products on behalf of African companies.
Mentoring: We offer advice and industry information to companies in terms of pricing, packaging, packaging design, branding, distribution and market research.
Capacity Building: We run a number of programmes to support African producers in their efforts to enter the international marketplace on an as-needed basis. These include creating gap analyses on international ethical standards, building enterprise relations in relation to region and supply chain management.
An important aspect of what we do is raising awareness of the importance of value added trade in poverty reduction. For example, through our partnership with University College Dublin, we have established the Proudly Made in Africa Fellowship in Business and Development. This offers us a unique forum in which to educate tomorrow’s business leaders on the benefits and importance of sustainable business in Africa for both corporate security and global development. It is in this space that we are able to influence the decision makers of the future and remove the negative bias associated with trade in Africa.
Why We Do This
In Sub-Saharan Africa, millions of people are living in significant need or poverty. There are multiple reasons for this. We believe that the fastest route to eradicating poverty is with trade not aid- we aim to support and promote a full African value chain that creates many employment opportunities while also offering a product that is as good, if not better, than the current marketplace offer. By changing the channels of African trade, African producers will be able to contribute to and participate in an international market, which benefits everyone.