Sitan Togola

Sitan Togola

Farmer from Guérékélé, Mali.

Sitan Togola is from Guérékélé in Mali. She has been farming fonio for over 10 years. She and her family have benefited enormously from the partnership with Farafena.

Fanta Koné

Fanta Koné

Farmer from Guérékélé in Mali.

Fanta Koné is from Guérékélé in Mali. She has been farming Baobab for 15 years. She has learnt her technique from the farmers in her village – and is now teaching others.

Maïmouna Koné

Maïmouna Koné

Farmer from Guérékélé in Mali

She has been cultivating Fonio for 10 years. It wasn’t always like this, but life is a lot easier for her and her family these days.

Dounomba Samakéis

Dounomba Samakéis

Farmer from Tébézana, Mali

Dounomba Samakéis from Tébézana in Mali. She has been farming the land for 12 years. Every day brings her and her children new blessings

Safiatou Togola

Safiatou Togola

Farmer from Tébézana, Mali

Safiatou Togola is from Tébézana in Mali. She has been farming Fonio for 10 years. She feels supported for the first time in her life.

Djénéba Doumbia

Djénéba Doumbia

Farmer from Tébézana, Mali

Djénéba Doumbia is from Tébézana in Mali. She has been a Fonio farmer for over 12 years. Djénéba believes in miracles and says the daily work is hard, but worth every minute.

Adjaratou Sangaré

Adjaratou Sangaré

Farmer from Guérékélé, Mali

Adjaratou Sangaré is from Guérékélé in Mali, has been gathering Baobab fruit for 12 years. She sees how she and the community are striving these days and is grateful.

Ramatou Doumbia

Ramatou Doumbia

Farmer from Guérékélé, Mali

Ramatou Doumbia is from Guérékélé in Mali. She has been involved in Moringa agriculture for 14 years. Her family loves the land and she believes that everyone can learn a lot about life from the soil.

Bintou Sangaré

Bintou Sangaré

Farmer

  • Oumar Barou Togola

    Founder, Executive Chairman

    Oumar has Africa running through his veins. He was born in Mali, but also spent much of his childhood in Benin, Chad and Burkina Faso. When you are from Africa you have a deep appreciation for the bounty of the soil. As well as the wellbeing of your people. Both of which put Oumar on a course to bring nutrient-rich African food to the world, at the same time giving directly back to the women farmers and communities that farm Farafena products. A partnership that grows people who grow health-giving food. Now based in Canada, Oumar’s entrepreneurial spirit coincides with his desire to give back to the communities his family lived in. Oumar’s background in business and strong family ties to Mali have been instrumental in establishing a systematic partnership with farmers at the grassroots level, as well as strong relationships with investors and partners in Canada. As founding Chairman of Farafena, he has attracted like-minded team members, all of whom believe that they, too, can put Mali on the map as the centre of African trade….and make a world of difference.

    “When we share a common purpose as people, a mutual desire to bring about the betterment of lives for one and all through food and upliftment, then the light of this world begins to burn a little brighter.”


  • Dylan Beechey

    Co-Founder & Director of Operations

    Dylan is a doer, fixer and problem solver. He has spent most of his professional career in a range of operations roles in the tech and telecom industry as well as managing small and medium size customer service teams. Dylan operates off a very simple belief: the better a social enterprise can do to improve the lives of others, the better we all do. No surprise then, that he came to co-found Farafena, which grew out of an idea rooted in a very simple concept: connect two continents through the power of healthy eating and it will lead to community upliftment. .

    “Anyone can be a change-agent for betterment. We all have the same ability to do it. One voice becomes two. Two becomes four. Thousands upon thousands of people now know about Farafena and what we are about. This is the power of a singular good idea.”


  • James Pratt

    CEO

    After graduating from the Richard Ivey School of Business at Western University with an MBA in 1987, Jim became an investment banker at a national investment dealer in Toronto. In 1992 he co-invested in Sepp’s Gourmet Foods, a food manufacturing company located in Vancouver, which was later listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange from 1997 to 2008. The company grew from $1 million in sales to close to $100 million and at one time had as many as seven manufacturing facilities located in three countries. He held various positions over the years, including President, CFO and ultimately CEO. Prior to joining Farafena Health as CEO, he was President and Director at Mazza Innovation, a botanical extract company, and co-owner of Prosnack Natural Foods, a manufacturer of healthy snack foods. Since 2010, he has been a c-level executive in three companies that were sold to publicly listed entities. Jim has served as a Director of the Food Innovation Centre of BC, Food Processors of Canada, Canadian Food Innovators, Timia Capital Corporation, and has served as Chairman of the Functional Foods Alberta Centre of Excellence and the BC Food Processors Association.


  • Kevin Wilson

    VP, Value Chain

    After 30 years’ immersed in project development, quality assurance and supply chain management developing people. Kevin has bought this collective acumen to bear on designing successful practical solutions across Farafena’s international operations. Throughout his career, Kevin has worked with teams in Africa, as well as the Arctic, Europe, India and Australia. The diversity of regions matches his multiplicity of experience, particularly when it comes to solving complex project deliveries.

    “The food chain is like a dynamic ecosystem. Every part reliant on the system above it, and the one below it. Nowhere is this truer than right here at Farafena.”

     


  • Jessica Au-Yeung

    Director New Products & Tech Services

    Jessica was born and bred in Vancouver – a ‘rare species’ given the city’s incredibly diverse population. Her background is in food manufacturing and processing. More specifically, her experience covers product development, resource management, plant expansion (the manufacturing plant, not the flora kind), quality management and technical support. But it is the Farafena mission that Jessica loves. The idea of bringing these ancient foods to the world, and with them, health and goodness. And at the same time supporting the women farmers of Africa, their families, and their communities.

    “This company is a win-win-win: for health and nutrition, for women farmers in Africa, and for the world as a whole. See, we’re already making a difference.”


  • Terry Holland

    Board Member

    Terry Holland has been involved in the Canadian private equity market for over 25 years. A commerce graduate of the University of British Columbia, Terry earned his CPA designation in 1981 and was awarded the FCPA designation in 2009. After a few years in public practice, followed by several years in real estate development and then in mining finance, Terry joined Trimin Enterprises Inc., a private equity firm, as president in 1990. Over the next 14 years Terry would play a lead role in Trimin’s success as a growth partner for mid-sized businesses. Anchored on its Partners in Industry philosophy, Trimin’s investment approach proved highly successful. Terry left Trimin Capital in 2004, launching Krystal Financial Corp., where he has had similar success investing in and partnering with small to mid-sized western based companies. In January 2018, Terry joined with Lance Neale and relaunched the business as Krystal Growth Partners, a new name, but a continuation of the same partnership approach to investing. As Managing Partner, Terry chairs Krystal’s investment committee and works with our portfolio companies on strategic growth, investment planning, and operations initiatives.

    Terry is a past chair of the BC Chapter of the Young Presidents’ Organization and World Presidents’ Organization (now YPO Gold) and is also a graduate of Harvard’s President’s Program in Leadership. Also active in his community, Terry is a past chair of the Boys and Girls Clubs of South Coast BC and past board member of St. George’s School.


  • John Frostad

    Board Member

    John Frostad is the CEO of Golding Farms Foods in Winston-Salem North Carolina.
    Previously, John was Vice Chairman of Shearer’s Foods, Inc., a privately owned U.S.
    company based in Brewster, Ohio. Shearer’s is involved in the manufacture, distribution
    and marketing of branded, private label, and contract pack snack food products
    throughout North America and internationally. Shearer’s has manufacturing plants
    in six key locations throughout the U.S. and over 1,200 associates.
    John was previously President and CEO of Snack Alliance, Inc., North America’s
    leading private label snack food manufacturer. Shearers acquired Snack Alliance in
    2010. John became an owner of these companies via a management buy-out in 1995
    from Curtice Burns Foods (now Pinnacle Foods).
    Prior to that time, John spent several years in senior management roles in
    Canada and internationally with a host of multi-national consumer products
    companies. These companies included Agri-Link (formerly Curtice Burns Foods),
    Unilever (Lever Brothers, Lipton and Unox), and General Mills.
    John previously served on the board of Garden Protein International (Gardein), the
    Mark Anthony Group (Mike’s Hard Lemonade; Mission Hill Wines), Hot House
    Growers Income Fund (now Village Farms), B.C. Children’sHospital, and The
    Neurological Center.
    John has been a member of the Young President’s Organization/World President’s
    Organization for over 25 years and in 1996 was the recipient of the “Top 40 Business
    People in Canada under the age of 40” award. John is currently an operating partner
    with Centre Partners, a private equity firm, based in New York City.
    John received his Bachelor of Business Administration and Masters of Business
    Administration from the Schulich School of Business at York University in Toronto.