Namibian beauty products are increasingly being used as ingredients in beauty products made by multinationals such as L’Oréal and many others,
an industry player revealed during an interview at the SADC Industrialisation Week held in Windhoek this week.
Ingredients found in Namibia include !Nara seeds oil, Devils claw, Marula oil, Manketti (wild oak)oil, Ximenia (Wild plum) oil, Commiphora or Namibian myrrh essential oil, Mopane essential oil, Baobab seeds oil and powder, Kalahari melon seeds oil, Sea Salt, Moringa oleifera powder Ochre and Talc.
Statistics from the trade ministry show that indigenous natural products contribute around N$100 million to the Namibian economy with potential to grow to N$400 million.
Dagmar Honsbein of the Namibia Network of Cosmetic Industry told the Windhoek Observer that the sector has huge growth potential.
“The potential is vast; Namibia has many natural products. Namibian products such as marula are used as ingredients in products made by companies like L’Oréal,” she said.
“I cannot say that we are a big name in the cosmetic industry, but I am delighted to say that we are growing. Even financial institutions are starting to see the value in the cosmetic industry.”
Giving the costs in manufacturing cosmetics, Honsbein said purifying oil products can range from N$1 million to N$5 million, exporting products can cost as much as N$5 million while industrial mixing machines can cost up to N$10 million.
“The beauty of the industry is that you can increase your value chain, you don’t need to do it all at once,” she said.
According to Honsbein, the Namibian cosmetic industry has received requests from countries including Botswana to help them with tips on how to grow their industries. “Our industry is on the ball because a lot of our materials are already being exported.”
The industry also imports products from Mozambique, Ghana, Nigeria and Uganda to supplement the production of its own products.
“The other African countries are of importance because we need Shea butter and Cocoa butter, thus we are already engaged in intra African trade,” said Honsbein.
The industry recently held a workshop to help Namibian beauty products enter the European Union market.