SAP Blog: Smart Phones and Mobile Devices Create Smooth Transactions in Rugged Terrain

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SAP Blog: Smart Phones and Mobile Devices Create Smooth Transactions in Rugged Terrain

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Check out the third blog in series as SAP visits Ghana - Smart Phones Create Smooth Transactions in Rugged Terrain
Tuesday, October 11, 2011 - 10:00am

Our last stop in Tamale in the Northern Region of Ghana brought us to the Gumu Shea Processing Plant to see how the shea nuts are processed into butter, a key ingredient in many of the cosmetic products we purchase in the developed world. I doubt many of us take much time to contemplate where the butter originates and certainly not that it comes from the toil of the hands of rural women farmers in the outskirts of Tamale. 

As our bus pulled into the dirt lot, we skeptically looked around for the plant, not immediately realizing that we were looking at it. It looked more like a farm with a few concrete buildings, no visible machinery, mud and straw huts, women sewing clothing, and children and animals milling about. Our allotted one and a half hours seemed grossly generous.
After seeing the collection of the nuts in Janga Town the day before, we were now getting to witness the processing of the nuts into butter, the next critical step in global shea nut supply chain.
We soon realized that the term “plant” in Gumu Shea Processing Plant is used rather loosely, since the extent of the equipment consists of one hand-turned roaster (valued at less than $100) and one nut dryer (valued at approximately $50), which is really a large pot, that a woman turns by hand for an hour, set over burning straw, which a man intermittently supplies. A rather unfair distribution of labor I think.

Continue reading about SAP's trip to Gumu Shea Processing Plant, Ghana on the original posting on Forbes...


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Keywords: Innovation & Technology | Ghana / mobile technology / SAP / shea nut farmers / smart phones / transparency