OSTRI-BEE is a sincere endeavour of the South African Ostrich Industry to be instrumental in the reaching of goals of Broad-based Black Economic Empowerment (BBBEE) as set by government.

In order to comply with the Agri-BEE guidelines, the South African Ostrich Business Chamber (SAOBC) developed a unique OSTRI-BEE model that focuses on the entire value chain derived from this rather unusual but uniquely South African bird.

Due to the specialised nature of the ostrich industry, and to minimise risk for new participants, it is important to distinguish between two entry levels: primary producer and processor involved in value adding.

The ostrich industry encourages participation in the entire value chain.  Hereby we believe that:

  • New participants will be able to increase their income and raise their standard of living.
  • Their ability to access capital and natural resources (land) will be enhanced.
  • The number of Black managers and specialists will be increased.

There are, however, definite risks and certain challenges that new entrants inevitably have to face:

  • Access to capital: It takes quite a long time for a new entrant to receive the first income.
  • Cashflow and income is based on a seasonal production pattern which places a lot of pressure on self-sustainability over the period
  • As an export focused product it is highly dependent on continued/ maintained export status
  • High intellectual capital on husbandry and care with stockman ship taking an extremely important place in success.

OSTRI-BEE focuses on development and skills-training:

  • The ostrich industry plays an active part in the training of artisans at ostrich abattoirs and ostrich tanneries.
  • Structured mentorship programmes exist on both farm and processor level.
  • Clear targets have been set for staff development.
  • Various development programmes have been implemented.
  • Agri entrepreneurship intern/learnership models to address primary producer development.

Western Cape

Klein Karoo International

  • Klein Karoo International supplies the ostrich feathers, which are sorted and sold back to KKI, by informal, trained specialist feather sorters and graders.
  • Enterprise development
  • Primary – an Eastern Cape initiative to establish and support 3 export units resulted in a supplier contribution of 10% of KKI’s processing stock.
  • Value adding to be involved in the complete value chain
  • Various other projects are being established at the ten agricultural societies in the Klein Karoo region.
  • Study grants are provided to ten students from previously disadvantaged communities.  This enables them to enter their first year of degree studies at the Free State University.

SCOT: South Cape Ostrich Tanning (Member of the Mosstrich Group, Mossel Bay)

  • SCOT has established joint ventures with Transnet and Eskom.
  • SCOT provides ostrich leather product manufacturing training to unemployed women in the Mossel Bay area and sell the products via SCOT’s marketing channels.
  • On occasion SCOT also donates leather for worthy developmental projects.
  • Mosstrich BEE Trust (Mossel Bay)
  • Mosstrich is owned by 180 ostrich producers.  The company has implemented a project whereby 6000 preferential shares, representing 6.5% of the issued shares capital, were issued to 250 employees.
  • The employees share in the company profits and it is paid out to the employees in the form of dividends.
  • The next step is to extend this programme to farm labourers working on some of the farms of the ostrich producers.

Eastern Cape

Three Export units, capacity of 1500 each accommodating 20 small scale farmers each, in enterprise development with KKI.

Northern Cape


The Kuruman Project is a Black-owned enterprise comprising 30 members who are involved in ostrich production.

The SAOBC’s ostrich production training booklet is used extensively by the members of this group.

One export unit in De Aar (female small scale exporter of the year), capacity 1500

All Ostrich Production Areas: Country-wide

Ostrich producers provide opportunities and upliftment for their employees by:

  • Donating ostrich chicks to them.  The producers then assist with raising and obtaining feed.  After the ostriches have reached maturity (slaughter age), the producers buy the birds from their workers.
  • Mentorship programmes exist on numerous farms.
  • There are also ostrich producers of have founded co-operatives for the benefit of their workers who are now also shareholders.

The SAOBC commissioned the publication of The Ostrich Farm – How to Get Started.  This booklet is given free of charge to new small-scale ostrich famers.

Besides gracing the landscape with its beauty, this bird has provided a livelihood to the local people in this area for decades.  People have worked, lived and brought up families on these farms for many generations.  The industry has maintained, expanded, created opportunities and has taken responsibility for education, skills development and uplifting of their communities.

Community Development

Projects in the communities

Wonderbag and environmental training

  •  A wonderbag is a simple but revolutionary, non-electric portable slow cooker. It continues to cook food which has been brought to the boil by conventional methods for up to 12 hours without the use of additional electricity or fuel. The idea behind the distribution of the wonderbags is to conserve our endangered species of trees, thus elimination deforestation.  The wonderbag-project also provides safety in die house (no fires and the danger of boiling pots being spilled). It also ensure that the children and women don not have to travel far from home to gather wood and stand the change to put them self in danger.


  • The sustainable food-garden project is to educate learners at a small age where our food comes from, how to grow your own food, how to take care of

Learning for Lights

  • This project is to encourage learners to learn.  Strip lights that are charged with batteries were used to provide light to study by.  Educators are part of the monitoring process, their academic performance and their overall learning growth.