A Family From The Roots
Cassava is a root vegetable that is a staple in the tropics. It is gluten-free, nut-free, paleo-friendly, and is consumed by over half a billion people daily. Cassava is also very versatile – it can be converted into over 300 derivative products. Consequently, over 200 million farmers depend on it for income. At CassVita, our mission is to empower farmers in vulnerable communities while offering innovative, healthy alternatives worldwide. We currently partner with over 500 farmers in Cameroon through our cooperative society, CassVita Farmers Cooperative, and so far, we have been able to increase farmers’ earnings by 5x.
Our first brand, cassava powder fufu, completely takes the stress away from making fufu. Fufu is an African cuisine that looks like a thick paste, usually eaten with soup. Traditionally, it is made from a stressful process of pounding the cassava tuber for hours. Because cassava spoils 3 days after harvest, most of the tuber that is not converted into fufu is usually wasted. In Africa, 23 million tons of cassava spoilage are recorded annually. CassVita’s innovative powder fufu product is shelf-stable for 18 months, 100% organic, and can be used to make fufu effortlessly in 5 minutes. Our bigger picture mission is to diversify into gluten-free flours, chips, and other snacks.
CassVita was founded in 2018 by childhood friends, Pelkins Ajanoh and Nembu Emmanuel. They have been friends for over 20 years, playfully competed in school, and after completing their engineering degrees – Pelkins at Massachusetts Institute of Technology in the US and Nembu at Cameroon’s National Advanced School of Public Works – they decided to team up to solve some of the world’s most complex quandaries, beginning with agritech innovation. They are both proximate leaders who strongly understand local context and global realities.