Are you having difficulty trying to think of an exciting new idea or business concept? If so, you’ll especially find of interest this humanitarian story of an entrepreneur who thought of a great new product over breakfast that is now saving thousands of lives.
Recently, a French non-profit company, Nutriset introduced a remarkable new product called Plumpy’nut to feed vast numbers of people who in prior times would have died of starvation.
This product was created by Andre Briend, a Nutriset consultant who had tried unsuccessfully for years to develop a great food supplement. Then one day, while having breakfast, Briend noticed a jar of a popular fruit spread on his table.
The thought seized him; use this concept! Briend created a sweet peanut butter spread that has a high dose of vitamins and minerals. Nutriset put it in small juice size packets, each containing 500 desperately needed calories.
This revolutionized famine food. In a crisis, relief groups frequently use powdered milk products. These products must be blended with clean water, which is often in short supply in chaotic relief camps and require many workers to blend and serve it. By contrast, Plumpy’nut can be instantly torn open and eaten.
It came at a critical time. In the Arab ruled North African nation of Sudan, a civil war is raging. In the Darfur section, along the Sahara desert is one of the hottest, driest, most inaccessible places on earth. There the war has taken an even uglier turn.
Arab militias called the Janjaweed, supported by Sudan’s government have been killing tribes of black farmers and burning their villages to seize their land and be rid of them. The United Nations and President Bush have called these horrific actions, racial “genocide.”
Over 180,000 people have died and two million people have fled, many of them to crowded, filthy, make-shift camps. Most of them arrive severely malnourished. Plumpy’nut has been feeding vast numbers of these people who might not otherwise survive.
For example, from The Wall Street Journal (4-12-05) is the story of little four-year-old Sadia. She fled with her family 25 miles on foot to a squalid refugee camp. On arrival, she was so weak from hunger, she nearly died.
But after several weeks of eating Plumpy’nut, she “was able to stand and walk again.” Seeing the packet in her mother’s hand, “she said ‘Plumpy,’ stepping forward on wobbly legs and reaching out her (tiny) hands. ‘Plumpy saved her,’ said her mother Fatma with a broad smile.”
Thankfully, because of Plumpy’nut and future products like it, millions of lives like little Sadia’s can be saved as mankind faces the ravages of famine whether from brutality in places like Darfur or from the force of nature as with the 2004 tsunami in Asia or Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans.
Success Tip of the Week: As Andre Briend showed us, creativity may come at any time. The key is to consistently apply your thought process and then let your subconscious mind do the rest.
In the next KazanToday, The courageous Japanese couple who risked their lives and those of their three children to save thousands of Jews fleeing the Nazis.