111 You need the black gold of the farmers Purchasing You hear all sorts of things about the special water retaining powers of the soil You need the black gold of the farmers compost With all its billions of microorganisms it can turn sand into living soil We must constantly enrich the soil through crop rotation and much more And this living soil then performs miracles it consumes less water it binds carbon in the soil and thus helps com bat climate change It also prevents the problem of salinisation which is always present in the desert so well that you hardly notice the salt that constantly ac cumulates on the surface It s almost as though the soil is digesting the salt How many hectares do you plan to green in the coming years We re starting small this year with around 63 hec tares But in the next few years we are aiming for more than 500 hectares Among other things we are going to grow medicinal plants for Lebensbaum there Families will live in the desert there will be educa tion health care and cultural programmes for the res idents The Egyptian bureaucracy is one of the oldest in the world Over the past few decades we ve learned not to count on the bureaucracy when we need to get some thing done Instead we rely on our own in itiative and entrepreneurial spirit As a socially responsible company and civ il society actor we are always asking ourselves the question of what we can do to shape the future We don t ask what others can do Sekem Sekem is now one of the world s largest organic farm ing operations The Egyptian project which has been transforming desert into fertile farmland since 1977 keeps on growing year by year More than 100 000 people owe their livelihoods directly or indirectly to Se kem In addition to a preschool schools and a hospital the Sekem cosmos now includes a university Sekem founder Dr Ibrahim Abouleish was awarded both the German Cross of Merit and the Alternative Nobel Prize for his extraordinary achievements Lebensbaum was one of the first companies to purchase herbs and spic es from Sekem Back in those early years Lebensbaum founder Ulrich Walter met Ibrahim Abouleish a phar macist in the desert Since then Sekem and Lebens baum have been bound by more than just a business partnership Following the death of Ibrahim Abouleish in 2017 his son Helmy Abouleish took on the role of leading the company toward the future

Vorschau Sustainability Report 2019 Seite 113
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