Here’s the latest in ESM’s regular series, Notes From Africa, which brings you the latest retail, consumer goods, and food-and-beverage stories from across the African continent. Past editions can be found here.
Tanzania: Kerry Group Opens Manufacturing Facility
Kerry Group, one of the world's providers of taste and nutrition solutions, has officially opened a new manufacturing facility in Dar es Salaam. The new unit is its first manufacturing facility in Tanzania and is expected to expand Kerry’s capacity in East Africa.
The company aims to support food and beverage manufacturers with access to high-quality ingredients in the region, which has a thriving food processing industry.
Kenya: KTDA To Invest $65m In New Specialty Tea Processing Lines
The Kenya Tea Development Agency (KTDA) is planning to install specialty tea processing units across its 32 factories. At a cost of Ksh 10 billion ($65 million), the project is an effort to get more value from orthodox tea amid declining revenues in traditional leaf black tea.
The private holding company is owned by more than 600,000 smallholder farmers across the country.
Zambia: Zambia Sugar Posts 14% Revenue Growth
Zambia Sugar, the largest sugar producer in Zambia, has announced a 14% increase in revenue for the year ended 31 August 2023, reaching K5.827 billion ($256.4 million). According to the company, revenue growth was driven by a number of factors, including a 12% improvement in the average selling price for domestic sales and a 28% rise in export sales.
As a result, operating profit increased to K1.248 billion ($54.9 million) from K1.243 billion ($54.7 million) the previous year. Zambia Sugar noted that it operated in a challenging environment, characterised by an influx of illegal imports, low disposable income for rural households, as well as a significant increase in key input costs like fertilisers, electricity, and fuel. The company has the capacity to produce 450,000 tonnes of raw, brown, and refined sugar.
Uganda: Fruit Processing Factory Commissioned
In Uganda, a fruit processing factory has been commissioned in Nakasongola district by President Yoweri Museveni. Expanded by Kike Tropical Fruits Limited, the unit has a processing capacity of 1,000 metric tonnes of fresh fruit each season, with more than 1,000 registered farmers supplying fruit to the factory.
The plant employs 500 workers directly and indirectly impacts over 10,000 small-holder fruit farmers across Uganda. The expansion of the plant will enable the factory to process higher volumes to cater to increased fruit demand in their international and local market.
Kenya: Twiga Foods Raises Funds For Growth
Kenyan retailer Twiga Foods has raised new funding from a group of investors, according to local media reports. The Kenyan start-up, which connects suppliers of agricultural products with grocers, will use this additional resource to fuel its growth and continue its transformation.
This funding comes as a relief for the company after it cut its workforce by one-third amid difficult market conditions. As it optimises its cost structure, it said that it will use the new funding to continue its business. The company has attracted over $100 million in financing since its inception in 2014.
Article by Espoir Olodo