When life gave her sugarcane, Shaheen Rajabally founded Natura Sugars. The company offers a wide range of unrefined sugars, and produces sugarcane juice. Here she chats with Glamour SA about her approach to entrepreneurship, self-care and bringing goodness back into sugar.
Please tell us about Natura Sugars?
Natura Sugars is a company that offers a range of truly cane unrefined sugars on the South African market. The range is crafted to lock in, rather than refine out the natural molasses of the sugarcane juice, without added colourants, additives or preservatives - just as nature intended.
Please talk us through your entrepreneurial journey?
I decided to start Natura Sugars when I noticed a gap in the market in the sugar category. Whilst popular on European supermarket shelves, truly unrefined sugar was not available to consumers in South Africa.
It has brought me the purpose to make Natura Sugars become a household brand in South Africa so that every family can have access to the range. I believe that people across all economic walks of life should be given the opportunity to consume the best quality products.
Can we talk briefly about sugarcane juice and the thought process behind it?
Our sugars are crystallised from the first press of the sugarcane juice without removing all the molasses from the syrup, using traditional crystallisation techniques dating back centuries ago. Our sugars do not have any added syrup but instead, have been crafted to lock in the natural molasses and health benefits of sugarcane.
Why is product knowledge key?
Product knowledge allows you to make an informed decision especially in a day and age where it is a personal responsibility to look after one’s health – physical, mental and spiritual.
What does self-care look like to you?
Quality time reflecting and contemplating. In Islamic Mysticism, this kind of reflection is known as “Tafakkur” and is a well-established practice which has been performed for centuries. It brings peace and serenity and deepens one’s connection with God.
Which women are on our radar at the moment and why?
Muna ElKurd and Hadar Cohen – two young, outspoken Palestinian women of different faiths but fighting for a similar cause.
What’s your message of hope this women’s month?
Pursue something that you are passionate about that will benefit others.