Women’s Imbizo at the Organic & Natural Expo Africa 2023

Empowering female entrepreneurs to thrive in business.

16 September 2023, 10.30am

Sandton Convention Centre, Johannesburg

R50/ticket to access the Expo (buy a ticket). The Women’s Imbizo is free to attend, but seats are limited.

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Aims of the Imbizo

  • Inform delegates about business opportunities in organic and natural products in Africa and the rest of the world
  • Showcase success stories of women in organic and natural products, sharing their journeys and lessons learned
  • Inspire and motivate women in organic and natural products
  • Read tangible business opportunities available for women in this sector
  • Create a platform for women to engage, share and collaborate for success
  • Support market growth by promoting organic and natural African product solutions

Topics on the Agenda

  • Global & African market trends in the natural and organic sectors
  • The African Continental Free Trade Area as platform for natural & organic sector growth
  • Inspirational stories from women who have succeeded in this industry
  • Business opportunities for women in this sector


Nobantu Mqulwana

Nobantu is a proficient communicator with a wealth of experience in the realms of enterprise development, non-profit organisations, and business transformation. She has acted as a master of ceremonies for a variety of events, including the highly-regarded DSV National Sales Awards Gala and the esteemed South African Freight Awards. Additionally, Nobantu possesses a strong background in media, having worked in both television and as a voice-over artist. Her clients frequently comment on her exceptional professionalism and remarkable ability to adapt to changing circumstances.

Thina Nodada – CEO: Waymaker Trade Solutions

Thina Nodada has spent the early years of his career honing in on his global trade, logistics and supply chain skills. After graduating from the University of Cape Town, Thina worked at Santova Logistics where he completed his two year International Trade Development programme that consisted of training in; customs, sea, air and road freight, courier and estimates to mention but a few. During the programme, Thina also enrolled for Certified Supply Chain Professional international accreditation through APICS institution based in Northern Colorado. 

Upon completing the graduate programme, Thina was appointed as Team Leader for Santova Express, an international courier division. After a year in this position, Thina was then promoted to a position of Logistics Executive for Santova Logistics. Thina has a deep passion for global trade and increasing the number of South Africans that are in the global trade space and for this reason, in 2018, Thina decided to step down from his position and founded Waymaker Global Trade Solutions. 

While his focus is on import and export facilitation, he also provides export market research solutions for products, corporates and entrepreneurs who are seeking to expand their footprint into export markets and logistics solutions. He knows there is no single approach that works for everyone, so he continues to educate himself on international trade and market trends to provide the most comprehensive solutions that works for each of his client’s individual needs. Thina is currently a board member for AgriVoice and operates Waymaker Trade Solutions from Fourways Johannesburg.

Heidene Lawrence – the rise of the disabled entrepreneur

Heidene Lawrence’s journey unfolds as a remarkable tale of overcoming challenges and driving transformative change. With over two decades of expertise in change management and leadership development, Heidene’s career has been a testament to her unwavering dedication to fostering positive organizational transformations. Her path, beginning as a trainer, evolved into a seasoned CEO of Tubbys Kitchen, reflecting her remarkable progression.

Parallel to her career, Heidene has faced the challengs of epilepsy, a condition that tested her strength and determination. Through her personal struggle, she discovered the healing power of medical cannabis, a journey that inspired her to create Tubby’s Kitchen. This venture blended her entrepreneurial spirit with her commitment to positive change, as she harnessed the benefits of CBD to craft teas and culinary products that empower herself and others suffering from chronic pain and various conditions.

Jane Mackenzie – 365 Healthy By Choice

Jane is a Holistic Natural Health Pharmacist and has been a natural health practitioner for well over 30 years. Graduating in Pharmacy, Jane witnessed the increasing incidence of Illness, the limited use of natural healing modalities, minimal use of nutrient dense food as medicine, lack of patient self-responsibility to heal, the overprescribing and reliance of medicines to heal, which are often harmful and seldom helpful in creating a sustainable shift from Illness to Wellness. 

Read more.

Jane Mackenzie

Rethabile Gladys Maimane – Managing Director: The Golden Goose

The Golden Goose was established 20 years ago, and manufactures “MOTOHO”, a traditional sorghum beverage which is known for its health benefits to contribute to food security. Studies shows that malnutrition still affects over 3 billion people worldwide.

The enterprise has introduced MOTOHO into a mass market network of retail outlets and direct sales in Free State and seeks to expand to other provinces, as well as to export in African countries.

Lorraine Jenks – Founder: HotelStuff and Greenstuff

Lorraine Jenks is a TEDx speaker, sustainability and ESG expert, as well as an expert in green procurement, supply chain and circularity. An accredited climate reality leader who has been trained by former US Vice President Al Gore, she has also studied with the United Nations Eco-Labelling Project, the National Cleaner Production Programme, the Green Building Council’s Interior Design and D.cor and Green Leaf Carbon Auditors. She is a qualified procurement and supply chain manager.

A renowned international speaker for all industry sectors due to her distinct style, Lorraine facilitates seminars, consults, operates completely furnished “green” show homes and hotels, and owns two non-profit internet directories with over 27,000 opted-in subscribers and followers. Lorraine will leave you feeling enlightened and motivated, armed with understanding, practical tools, and tips.

Janine Ryan, Farmer’s Weekly

Janine began her career in agricultural media as a copy editor at Farmer’s Weekly in 2016. She quickly rose through the ranks and was promoted to managing editor of the magazine by the end of 2016. During her tenure as managing editor, she managed the copy-editing department, as well as the work flow of the magazine. Her passion for the emerging sector led to her being selected as an adjudicator for the Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development’s Female Entrepreneur Awards for three consecutive years. She was promoted to editor of Farmer’s Weekly in March 2022, where she has since founded the Farmer’s Weekly Information Station, which aims to educate and inform farmers in the emerging sector about best practice with regards to livestock production

Mr Peterson Molukanelo, GM : Marketing Trade and Investment – Free State Development Corporation 

Peterson Molukanelo is an established Business Development and Investment practitioner with extensive experience managing economic development projects, implementing programmes and services that offer skills development, business concept development and business development services to clients. He has a phenomenal ability to identify risks and implement solutions to mitigate risk. Peterson is a strong leader who manages and mentors teams to achieve optimal outcomes. He is an excellent communicator who builds strong long-lasting relationships with stakeholders. He maximises his expertise by utilising his experience and education including a MBA and BCom Economics Degree. 

Pumzo Sive Tshikitshwa – The Department of Trade, Industry & Competition:  Industrial Financing Branch (IFB), Export Marketing & Investment Assistance (EMIA), Customer Care & Stakeholder Relations

Mr Tshikitshwa’s responsibilities at the DTIC include:

  • Export and trade advisor
  • Facilitating and co-ordinating export trade seminars across all provinces
  • Maintaining relationships with relevant stakeholders i.e: PIA, industry associations
  • Coordinating international trade shows together with the export councils and relevant coordinators etc.
  • Maintaining relationships with clients

Ms. Vicky Manaka, Limpopo Economic Development Agency (LEDA), Export Promotion Officer

Ms Manaka’s responsibilities at the LEDA are to facilitate export, trade and promote exportable products for the province and to:

  • Identify and facilitate export promotions programs
  • Implement export promotion programmes
  • Export Development (Organise training and workshops)

Bernice Yalley is the founder and CEO of Africa Goodnest, one of Africa’s leading marketplaces for made-in-Africa consumer packaged brands.

With a background in international development and project management, Bernice brings expertise in business development and multi-stakeholder partnership building to the landscape of startups and small and medium enterprises in the growing African consumable products space. Her professional experience has included working with the private sector, local governments, as well as local and international non-governmental organizations in Africa, Asia and the United States. 

Bernice has a Bachelor of Arts in Environmental Studies from American University in Washington, DC and a Master of Public Administration with a concentration in Environmental Science & Policy Management from Columbia University in New York.

Gary Jackson – Founder: Jackson’s Real Food Markets

Gary Jackson is the founder of Jackson’s Real Food Markets. With 25 years of experience under his belt, he is no stranger when it comes to navigating the food retail realm.

“It’s all about keeping customers thrilled and exceeding their wildest expectations. My mission is to provide an alternative food supply that is as pesticide and hormone-free as possible. Nutrient-dense is our focus!” he says.

The first Jackson’s Real Food Market opened as a corner shop in Bryanston in May of 2014. This was followed by the expansion and opening of their flagship market in September of 2016 — located a short jump across the road.

A year later in November of 2017, a demand for healthy food in northern Joburg, led to the opening of Jackson’s Real Food Market Kyalami.

As of now, Jackson’s has become one of the most popular food markets, with our Bryanston store having won the 2018 Best of Joburg Awards for Best Food Market.

“Organic & Natural Growth Opportunities Africa 2023”

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