Meet ‘The Avo Man 568’ of Umdloti

When Deo Mdletshe is not selling avos in Umdloti, he enjoys playing pool with his brother, Petros.

As the sun rises over Umdloti’s North Beach Road, you see the silhouette of a man neatly stacking avos on the pavement and as dusk settles in, he packs them away.

What started off as a holiday business for two teenage brothers nearly 20 years ago in Umdloti is now their daily bread and butter.

Deo(31) and Petros (27) Mdletshe take turns manning their roadside avo business, open from sunrise till sunset, Wednesday till Sunday.

“Avos are good business, we love them. You just have to cut and eat.

“See me, I’m fit because I eat avos – they make you healthy, strong and they help you have more children,” said Deo, who is the father of four, Nonhlelo (10), Nokuthula (7), Sifundo (6) and Obvious (1).

Petros on the other hand clearly needs to eat more avos, as he only has one nine-month-old girl, Zinhle.

Umdloti locals and visitors proudly support the entrepreneur brothers, some going every week to get their bag of five small avos or four big ones for R30.

Some even promote the business for them online, like Caryl Smith who recently shared a photo of ‘The Avo Man 568’ (the numbers refer to the area code and has become a nickname for Umdloti) asking people who have not tried his avos to support him.

Still, many have no idea what a trek the brothers go through to set up their green business everyday.

“We live in Maphumulo and get the avos from a farmer there. I hire a car for R1600 for the day and buy 60kgs of avos for the week and come down to Umdloti, my brother goes to Durban North.

“I always taste one before I buy them to make sure they are good.

“We camp here until Sunday and go home again.

“I am trying to grow my own avos, but you have to wait seven years before you get fruit.”

The brothers follow this routine from March 15 till December 15.

“The other three months, I buy gum trees from Maphumulo, cut and sell them to Sappi. Avos are better business.”

>>  Expect to find the latest trends in Health, Wellness and Beauty in Ballito.

>> Meet the top players in the North Coast property industry. See our Property People feature.

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Elana Geist

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