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Veldtalk: Making Fresh Bread Fly
Veldtalk Article on 6/11/2014
Making fresh bread fly
An aviation executive and pilot with her head in the clouds and her feet on the ground. That’s Christine Garbett of Riverside Estates who, together with her husband Rob, decided to do something about job creation in the area.
Christine is an instrument-rated commercial pilot whose flying career includes several single engine solo ferry flights between Europe and South Africa and numerous flights with tourists into the Okavango Delta.
Their job-creation dream, Go4Green, was launched on 26 August: a unique factory run by locally employed people producing delicious bread products. It is situated next to the Lanseria offices of Professional Aviation, the company founded by Christine in 1980 to operate in the field of turbo-prop and jet aircraft sales. She and her husband, Bob, has now expanded it into risk services and air cargo security.
“The donation of a gasifier by Eskom allows the project to generate ‘green’ electricity by burning wood from invasives such as Syringa,” explains Christine. “This feeds the bakery which now employs 10 people from the surrounding community.”
The Industrial Development Corporation (IDC), keen to generate jobs and small businesses for underprivileged communities, donated R1,9 million to the project as start-up capital for the bakery and refurbishment of the Eskom gasifier.
The launch took place 26 August as the impressive gasifier chugged along on its diet of wood logs, feeding the bakery. Few things are as tantalising as the smell of freshly baked bread, so after the demonstrations and speeches the guests were treated to a spread of freshly-baked products.
“Thuli Dube heads up the bakery and is Go4Green's project manager,” says Christine. “She is very enthusiastic and is learning all the skills so she is able to step into the shoes of anyone in the project at a moment’s notice.
“Go4Green bread, at R7.50 a loaf, is made from stone-ground flour without any GMO ingredients. We are also selling breadrolls, Chelsea buns, scones and other baked products. We’re aiming to produce 2 000 loaves per day. From the profits of the sale of bread, further job creation programmes will be launched for the unemployed people living around Lanseria Airport.”
The Gasifier is able to produce 60kW per hour of electricity. The bakery uses some 20kW so the plan is to use the extra 40kw for other projects. These may include aquaponics, non-GM maize milling, an internet café and training centre and possibly acquiring industrial sewing machines for garment manufacturing.
Go4Green is managed by a committee consisting of Professional Aviation Executives, Gasifier technology developers, members of the local community and technicians.