How a tale of young love blossomed into an international food brand, the two only Swati-Colombian babies in history, ecosystem restoration and economic empowerment for dozens of rural families in Eswatini!
Joe and I started Black Mamba because he was nuts about chillies and I wanted to do something that would bring positive impact to the world. I was born in Colombia and he was born in Eswatini (former Swaziland), so we both had the tropical temperatures of the Southern Hemisphere in our blood. When he told me about the chilli sauce he’d once concocted in his kitchen, and how he named it Black Mamba (one of the most dangerous African snakes and, gasp, indigenous to the country) something sparked in me. I couldn’t wait to try it!
After remixing his African recipe with a dash of Latino flavour, we launched our first bottles of Black Mamba at Bushfire, Eswatini’s internationally acclaimed music and arts festival, in 2010. All 400 bottles sold out right away! Within months we went from employing one woman to stir a pot in our patio, to having our own workshop, and today, a fully- fledged factory, where we make our dangerously tasty products that we bring to Chilliheads and Ethical Foodies around the world.
We believe passionately in making products that are good-for-you, good-for-the-earth, and good for the rural communities we work with, and to achieve this we source our fresh ingredients from Guba, a local permaculture training organisation. Guba manages a growing network of over 50 smallholder farmers who grow fresh organic herbs and chillies for Black Mamba's products. The direct positive impact of this partnership reaches over 1,000 individuals in Eswatini!
We get organically grown ingredients, the farmers get a sustainable income, and the local ecosystems get restored with the use of regenerative agriculture methods. That’s what we call a HOT deal!
We aim to become a cult brand connecting food lovers across the world to generations of growers, proving that planet and people matter.
We aim to show the world that Africa can provide first-world products while keeping a strong social and environmental ethos
…and we want to achieve chilli world domination! (having fun while doing it)
The rest, as they say, is (hot) history.