Managing Director, Mnandi Africa
Ruramiso Mashumba is a young woman farmer in Marondera. She holds a BA Degree in Agriculture Business Management from the University of West England (UWE) upon completing a degree in Agriculture Business Management, Ruramiso worked for one of United Kingdom's leading agriculture equipment companies. It was during that time Ruramiso realized how the use of equipment and technology could transform agriculture. Upon her return to Zimbabwe she committed herself to transform the image of agriculture.
She moved to farming in 2012 on a farm she inherited from her parents. The farm was just a bush with no equipment. Today the farm has tractors, planting equipment, center pivot and crop protection equipment.
In 2013 she started growing horticulture crops for export into the European union and Africa.
In 2014 Ruramiso partnered with Sustainable afforestation association and planted 100 ha of gum trees to address the issue for deforestation in her community. In 2014 she was elected to become National chairperson of The Zimbabwe Farmers Union and became the first woman in Zimbabwe to hold this position.
Her work was noticed by AGCO and she was invited to attend their Africa Summit in Berlin in 2015. After sharing her story, she won an award for influence and leading woman toward mechanization in Africa. Ruramiso expanded and started growing a variety of horticulture crops, indigenous organic grains that she milled into flour under the brand Mnandi organic and traditional, brown rice as well as commercial maize.
In 2016, Ruramiso was selected to participate in the Mandela Washington Fellowship, which is the flagship program of Barack Obama's Young African Leaders Initiative. Ruramiso was selected to be a panelist at the World Food Prize in Iowa and gave input on the importance of nutrition in Africa. Ruramiso also became a member of the global farmer network and was nominated for The Zimbabwe businesswoman award.
In 2017 Ruramiso got a 50 ha contract to grow seed for seed co which she will be growing this season. Ruramiso also founded Mnandi Africa, an organization that helps rural woman combat poverty and malnutrition by empowering and equipping women with skills and knowledge in agriculture, nutrition, markets and technology; assisting them access affordable and effective agro technology through an input-sharing program; and collectively purchase and sell goods and services. Mnandi's vision is to ultimately end hunger and poverty. Ruramiso pitched her organization to echoing green in New York and her organization won the echoing green fellowship that offers support and seed funding to start-ups. Her application was one of the 30 that won out of a pool of 3000 globally.
She has been on the cover of The Zimbabwean Farmer magazine and also on the New Alliance for food and nutrition publication, which is endorsed by the African Union. Ruramiso was also selected as vice chairperson for the Southern African Confederation of Agriculture Unions youth ambassadors for the region. She was nominated for several agriculture awards and won the young farmer leader award which was presented by industry and government. In 2018 Ruramiso won the iconic African award for farming and agriculture. She was recently invited to Boston for the CRSIPcon organized by the broad institute of technology (MIT) and Harvard to give input on what access to technology would mean to small scale farmers. Ruramiso hosted the African Development Bank at her farm in 2018.