Elephant Pepper Development Trust
The company started in 1994 as the Elephant Pepper Development Trust to address human elephant conflict (HEC) at a local level in Africa. The Trust was setup to promote the livelihood of farmers living in elephant range through training, the deployment of appropriate conflict mitigation methods and development of agricultural techniques which promote elephant conservation.
Conservation was initially focused at a local level. Working with individuals and communities the Trust developed techniques for problem animal control. These techniques were further refined and developed into Community-based Problem Animal Control (CBPAC) training sessions. The goal of this training is to mitigate the impact of human-elephant conflict upon rural farmers by two means: first by introducing innovative strategies to protect crops, and second, by improving livelihoods through the introduction of viable cash crops. The techniques involved are low technology and utilise available materials, are safe, low-cost and effective.
Elephant Pepper Brand
Part of the Trust’s initiative was the development of the Elephant Pepper brand (EP). EP was established to promote and market products made from chili peppers as a feasibility study. Chilies were purchased at a premium from farmers implementing problem animal control (PAC) methods. Primarily used as a barrier crop, chilies may also be used as an irritant in smoke or in paint solutions. EP processed chilies to make a number of chili sauces that sold locally and internationally.
Connected Conservation (CC) evolved from EPDT to cover broader issues of human wildlife conflict at both local and regional levels. CC provides a broad range of consulting services for governments and non-governmental organisations, while continuing to work with agricultural producers to address local wildlife conflict issues.
Pepper Company Brand
Building on the success of the feasibility study, CC rebranded EP as the “Pepper Company”. The Pepper Company provides an outlet for a wider range of products derived from ingredients obtained from different human wildlife conflict areas. Products are hand crafted and produced in small batches and are made to suit small niche markets requirements.
Over years, Connected Conservation has worked with governments and institutions in Africa and Asia. Some of the countries include;
Zambia, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Mozambique, DRC, Kenya, Gabon, CAR, Ghana and Lao-PDR, Cambodia, Thailand and India.
Connected Conservation has also partnered with many non-governmental and private organizations, including the;
World Bank, Wildlife Conservation Society, United States Fish and Wildlife Service, and USAID.