Spicing up the food industry

The challenges that come with running one’s business are endless. They vary in their nature and magnitude. Imagine losing your number one supporter in the form of your father soon after venturing into your own space within entrepreneurship.

That is the story of Phindile Zama from Pietermaritzburg. She lost her father in May last year around the time when she decided to start her own business. Even though her father never understood why Phindile left her stable job as a Laboratory Head at Clover, he was the one who started planting chillies in his garden so that his daughter’s business may get off the ground quicker.

A few months later Phindile has a Shisanyama that is running very well and she is saddened by the fact that her dad is not with her physically to enjoy the successes of her new venture.

By qualification, Phindile is a Food Technologist and has worked in the food industry for more than 10 years. She now runs her own Shisanyama which is based at Taylor’s Halt, in Pietermaritzburg. What makes her business unique from the rest of her competitors in the food industry is that she produces authentic sauces for meat lovers and foodies.

By ‘authentic sauces’ we mean that she mixes her own original ingredients after developing the recipes by trial and error, and eventually coming out with something so tasty and delicious.

I enjoy cooking and trying something new. So when I realised I had too much time on my hands after quitting my job I started experimenting with the idea of sauces. And this idea soon became a project which turned into a business opportunity.

Phindile’s dream is to become a nationally known brand, or even internationally. She often dreams of seeing Chillaz Sauces in every shelf of every retail shop eMzansi; on tables in restaurants and BnB’s. She has already started negotiations with a number of prospective clients to supply her authentic sauces and one restaurateur recently told her that his patrons were usually not keen on trying an unknown brand, but those that tasted her sauces were very happy. That is what motivated Phindile to go ahead and expand her business.

By opening a Shisanyama, she has created an opportunity to do exactly what she wants to do with her sauces. For every food item (inhloko, umgxabhiso, braai meat, etc.) that they sell, it comes with a dash of the sauces. They have been getting nothing but compliments from people who visit her spot. It’s still early days for the business but the progress they are making is amazing. They are selling the sauces separately as well and the news about Chillaz Sauces is spreading fast like wild fire.

To witness what we are talking about you should make your way to her place on weekends to see the buzz. But what is more pleasing for Phindile is that as the word about her new establishment is spreading around, they are now getting more customers on weekdays who come to grab a bite during  their lunch  break. That on its own is an indicator for growth.

Judging by Phindile’s level of commitment there’s no doubt that her authentic sauces and Shisanyama business will continue to reach new markets. When we asked her what keeps her motivated to keep on going at this stage of her life, now that her father is no longer with her in flesh, this is what she said:

“My daughter keeps me motivated. My desire is to provide her with a certain lifestyle and every time I feel like giving up it’s almost as if she can tell because she just becomes the sweetest person on earth. Then I remember that I left the comfort and security of a salary so I can provide her with something extra special. I feel that being my own boss will afford me to be the best mom to her.”


  1. Reply
    barnes and noble coupon code says

    Thanks – Enjoyed this blog post, can I set it up so I receive an update sent in an email every time you write a fresh update?

  2. Reply
    Where2Be says

    At Where2Be its such businesses that we believe in and we will make sure that places like Chillaz Shisa Nyama make it to our database and our users are able to visit this place.We believe in local tourism and business empowering.

  3. Reply
    Zamokuhle Zama says

    Congratulations hope you prosper

  4. Reply
    Chris Madlala says

    Good for decentralisation of social entertainment.We cant be all driving to town for enjoyment.Godspeed.Directions from Pmb CBD?

    • Reply
      Phindile says

      Take the Moses Mabhida Road towards Edendale, it’s +-20km. You will then pass a Sasol garage on your right, carry on for +-1km the next intersection, you take a left, you will have arrived, and you will also see the sign

  5. Reply
    Sibabalwe Mehlo says

    I am very proud of you my friend.I know you are going too far.

  6. Reply
    Themba Mzimela says


    You are an inspiration to each and every one of all future entrepreneurs

    Your determination and courage to succeed is commendable!

    I visited your business on the 4th of March and was impressed!

    Good luck and God bless

  7. Reply
    Simphiwe Bhengu says

    If I didn’t know Phindile Zama I would say it’s just a publicity stunt but fortunately I have known and worked with her and what she says about her life is true she is not making it up. My sister you are an inspiration not only to woman but to man as well and with your humbleness respect and commitment you have I have no doubt that you will go high places. All the best to you.

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