Stakeholders urge institutions to develop courses for qualified dairy technologists

TANZANIA – Stakeholders in the dairy sector have called on learning institutions to develop courses to ensure sufficient training that will provide the sector with professionally qualified dairy technologists. Tanzania, despite the tremendous growth in the dairy sector, has to rely on dairy technologists sourced from the neighbourhood, including Kenya since it does not offer dairy technologist courses locally. This in the long run has weighed heavily on the development of the dairy sector, affected by high costs of production due to imported manpower. “There are no colleges or universities…

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Thailand’s corn and rice production to hit record high

ASIA – According to the Foreign Agricultural Service of the USDA, rice and corn production in Thailand is predicted to reach a record 21million and 5.1million tonnes respectively in the year 2018-19. The higher figures reflect a 3% and 2-3% increase for rice and corn production from 2017-18 marketing year. Growth in production is expected to be driven by high prices and availability of water that support irrigation. In February, the farm-gate price for white and fragrant paddy rice were up 5% and 53%, respectively, from the previous year. To…

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India wheat production to hit 100million tonnes target

ASIA – India’s wheat production is predicted to hit target of 100million tonnes this year given conducive climatic conditions witnessed especially during the grain ripening period. Farmers and scientists attributed the increase to favorable climatic conditions, availability of water, isolated cases of pest infestations in major wheat growing estates in the country, according to Blackseagrain report. In its second advanced estimates, the Union Agriculture Ministry predicted 97.11 million tonnes of wheat production this year with over 100million tonnes in output estimates given suitable conditions for the crop. “The climate has…

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China’s bottled water sales decline as market reaches saturation point

ASIA – China’s bottle water growth is hindered by market saturation while retail volume sales continue to decline, according to the London-based market research firm, Mintel. According to the research, China’s bottled water sales volume growth fell from 5% in 2015 to 4.2% in 2017, and is predicted to fall further to 2.8% by 2021. This is despite the fact that China’s bottled water market was expected to expand at an annual rate of 7.42% and lead the global market with 57,903.90 million litres expected to be consumed in 2021…

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Cargill introduces de-oiled lecithin products for clean label and GMO-free range

USA – Cargill has launched a new de-oiled rapeseed lecithin, an allergen-free and label-friendly ingredient that finds application in bakery and snacks to meet increasing consumer demand. According to Juergen Detert, technical service manager for Cargill Starches, Sweeteners & Texturizers, and the new range offers great emulsification performance without compromising on taste or texture and was developed through extensive research by R&D and applications team to offer comparable functionality to soy and sunflower. In the US, Non-GMO claims are increasingly gaining momentum and Cargill is working with food and beverage…

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Deficit in food production raises imports by 58% in January

KENYA – Kenya has imported food items worth US$207.119m, a 58.33% increase from US$130.812m witnessed in January 2017, as a result of food deficit attributed to prolonged drought conditions experienced last year, according to a data by the Kenya national Bureau of Statistics. Following poor rainfall and insufficient food production, prices of basic commodities shot up, calling for intervention from the government. As a result, subsidies and a waiver on import duties was announced between mid-May and December on imported commodities such as maize, milk powder and sugar to meet…

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Firmenich opens a new culinary discovery hub in Thailand

ASIA – The Swiss maker of flavors and fragrances has opened a new culinary and discovery centre in Bangkok, Thailand to drive innovation creating fragrances and flavors for the world’s most desirable brands. The innovation hub brings together a team of expertise from Firmenich including chefs, flavorists and food technologists, capitalizing on continued consumer demand for healthier and more nutritious food and beverages. To enrich the region’s culinary heritage, the centre will be ideal in developing innovative culinary solutions with an emphasis on Savory, Sweet Goods and Beverages. The investment…

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