From inventing the dolosse that guard coastlines to pioneering the first heart transplant, South Africa has a long and proud history of invention and innovation. But, apart from the big stuff we all know from the history books, there have also been some more consumer-facing day-to-day products invented by South Africans that most of u can use in our homes every day. Check out these 5 proudly South African products that we love:
Wonderbag: The non-electric portable slow cooker
A bag that cooks food and doesn’t need electricity, what a revelation! Listed as one of Time magazine’s Top 50 genius products, this clever invention was born in South Africa. Wonderbags not only look beautiful but the non-electric portable slow cookers also offer a simple solution to many lower-income families who struggle to afford electricity or who have no access to electricity at all. The heavily insulated container allows you to slow-cook food for up to 12 hours with no more electricity required once the pot is heated.
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Boomer Beach Bats: An international hit
Businesses-man Richard Goldstein turned his hobby of making beach bats into a booming success. After impressing his friends and family with what many now call “the world’s best beach bat”, Goldstein unleashed his creation on the world. Today, Boomer beach bats sell in Australia, France, Germany, the United States and United Kingdom and their popularity keeps on growing.
The bats have a unique hole design which make the bats easier to swing with less wind resistance. They’re also made with sustainably-sourced woods of different strengths, which combine to create the required flex and power properties in the bat. It is the same principle applied to multi-layered wooden skateboard decks.
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The Kreepy Krauly: An age-old favourite
You can’t have a list of South African inventions and not include the Kreepy Krauly. This popular pool cleaner was the brainchild of South African hydraulics engineer, Ferdinand Chauvier. His son, Danny, sold pool equipment and chemicals and quickly realised that most pool owners were loath to keep their pool clean because of the effort it took to do so. Ferdinand set about to create an automatic pool cleaner, drawing on his hydraulics engineering background to ultimately create the Kreepy Krauly. To date, over 1.5 million of them have been sold across the globe!
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Pinotage: A South African varietal
The next time you’re enjoying a glass of Pinotage wine, savour the flavour as the popular varietal is proudly home-grown. The Pinotage grape was bred in South Africa as a result of the merging of Pinot Noir and Hermitage grapes by Stellenbosch’ University’s first Professor of Viticulture, Abraham Perold.
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Pratley Putty: The first South African on the Moon
Believe it or not, South Africa also had a part in the success of the Moon landing. South African George Pratley invented Pratley Putty while attempting to create a glue that would securely keep components in an electrical box. Pratley’s glue was so successful, it was used during the Moon landing in 1969: Segments of the Apollo XI mission’s Eagle landing craft were held together by the putty!
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