​Project Grow's people

Who are the farmers and growers?

In some cases growers are individuals (representing the community), but the whole community is part of the project and becomes involved in forestry. In other areas only some individuals plant trees, but then contract individuals within the community to work the planted lots for them.

There are some areas where the community does forestry on an individual basis but rotates working on each plot in turn and the individual retains the profits. Some schools and churches have also joined the scheme; in these instances the profits go to the institution and all the members benefit.

How does Sappi benefit?

In FY2015, Project Grow supplied Sappi with 12.4% (by volume) of our South African hardwood intake, representing the supply of approximately 360,000 tons of fibre.

How do growers and communities benefit?

Project Grow contributes to the South African government’s rural development programme and its focus on long-term job creation and training. The scheme offers the following benefits:

  • participation in an industry from which growers would otherwise be excluded because of high entry costs
  • a guaranteed market at prevailing market prices
  • positive cash flow from ongoing payments for work done on the land, and annual advances on the timber crop
  • employment opportunities, as growers employ people within their communities to assist in managing their plantation.
  • empowering women in rural areas, giving them the opportunity to work from home and perform maternal duties, whilst supplementing household incomes
  • growers are able to meet their own fencing, building material and firewood needs
  • skills transfer and developing entrepreneurial thinking
  • an integrated development service for rural communities, with emphasis on training to maximise potential

In addition, Project Grow has established more than 1,700 indirect rural jobs – 80% women – and over 100 small, medium and micro enterprises (SMMEs)

Want to Know More?
For more information, please send an eMail to projectgrow@sappi.com