LEDET has made a purposeful economic intervention by developing the Limpopo Mukumbi Industries as a viable business industry within the Province, taking advantage of the vast concentration of Marula trees found mostly in the sub-tropical parts of the Province. A Company registration was facilitated through the then LIMDEV now LEDA on behalf of communities that are into the Marula industry and already ten (10) co-operatives as part of formalizing community business structures that are now responsible for the management of the company have been registered with the registrar of Co-Operatives through then LIBSA now incorporated into LEDA.
The Limpopo Mukumbi Industries was officially launched on the 4th March 2006 during the annual Marula Festival hosted in collaborations with the DSAC at Muti wa Vatsonga. The Limpopo Mukumbi Industries Pty, Ltd has been the official supplier of the home brewed Morula/Mukumbi/Vukanyi beverage from 2006 until 2013 with the exception of 2012 where there was a communication breakdown between LEDET and Ba-Phalaborwa Municipality when a service provider was engaged. However, the involvement of these registered Cooperatives had positive spin-offs on investment into the Industry and also employment of rural community members who assist with harvesting and transportation of the fruit annually depending on the order from the organizers of the Marula festival.
Since this was a purposeful intervention to utilize the festival as a draw card to attract domestic, regional and international tourists to Limpopo during the Marula season as well as to develop the festival as a marketable brand for Limpopo, a fact-finding mission was carried out in Germany (at the Munich Oktoberfest) in an endeavor to enhance our knowledge and skills on how related festivals are conducted on a sustainable basis.
Following the successful fact finding mission on German's Oktoberfest Beer Festival undertaken during October 2006 commonly known as the "Wiesn" whose objective was to enhance knowledge, skills and understanding of the members of the Limpopo Mukumbi Industries Task Team on how a festival that today has grown to become a sought after event in the world was developed and sustained over the years, the following recommendations were made;
To identify a permanent venue for the festival around which a strong and authentic brand can be developed which the people of Limpopo will have a feeling of ownership with – a brand maintaining its cultural uniqueness and originality.
To develop a festival package to be enjoyed by all age groups as a collective experience (i.e. blend the festival with other activities other than the Marula Beverage). Enhance marketability of the Marula products through the creation of strong partnerships between Mukumbi/Vukanyi/Morula beverage brewers with the hospitality industry.cropped-logo.jpg
The town of Phalaborwa because of its tourism profile and close proximity to other major tourist destinations including the world's renowned Kruger National Park incorporated within the Greater Limpopo Transfrontier Park which includes Mozambique and Zimbabwe has been declared a permanent home for hosting the annual Marula festival. The town has a well-developed infrastructure, a top class airport and golf course, a wide variety of tourists' accommodation, tourism products and numerous game lodges in close proximity. It is easily packaged with products around Hoedspruit, Tzaneen, Modjadji'skloof, Magoebaskloof and Giyani. This location and setting, makes a Limpopo Marula Festival that promises to become a major attraction for locals, domestic and international tourists.