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Jamataka Villagerís Bakery Business Turns Lucrative

PINI BOTHOKO
JAMATAKA: Over the years, Ditshebo Kelelelo (47), has been baking bread, commonly known as Mapakiwa, and selling it to fellow villagers here.

The business has become so synonimous with this small village on the Francistown-Orapa road, that patenting  the idea, and labelling the products “Made in Jamataka” would be an ideal situation.

Born and bred in Jamataka, Kelelelo, is a proud beneficiary of government poverty eradication programme, which has influenced her to aim for the stars with much vigour. 

A single mother of one son, as a small step towards realising her dream, Kelelelo is currently doing brisk business with schools in the area, which she is supplying with oven-baked bread.

The catalyst for all this was a course that she enrolled in in 2015 under the poverty eradication programme.

After the course, she set up the bakery business at her home with the help of two temporary assistants.

Evidently, the course acted only to polish her raw baking talent which she had acquired from her family. It motivated her to turn her talent into a business idea.

“My business has grown and I am able to meet the needs of my family,” Kelelelo told Monitor Business from the comfort of her home.

To further enhance her skills, Kelelelo said early this year she went for another week-long training in Nata where she learnt a lot on how to prepare mostly bakery products.

She said that the scheme bought her a fridge, four burner stove which has an

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oven, two baking trays, gas cylinder, 50kg white flour, 12.5kg cake flour, 12.5kg sugar, 20 litre cooking oil and baking ingredients.

She however said that she has resorted to use fire to bake in a traditional oven made out of mud, which can load two big trays at once because the gas stove is too slow.

She said the traditional oven is ideal considering the large quantities required by her clients. “This oven is much better because it loads two big trays once. Recently I won a two-year contract to supply Tlhalogang Junior Secondary School with 550 Mapakiwa three times in a month,” Kelelelo said.

She said that she also supplies Jamataka Primary School with Mapakiwa adding that with the two tenders, she is optimistic that the future is bright for her business.

She said that at the moment she is struggling because she uses her hands to mix the flour and she dreams to one day grow into a big business with ideal machinery.

“I was recently allocated a business plot here. My dream is to secure financial assistance in order to establish a fully-equipped bakery and be able to supply big shops and employ other citizens,” Kelelelo said.

Despite her early success, Kelelelo revealed that she is faced with challenges like shortage of water, which sometimes hit the village.



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