KENYA – Kenya’s ultra-modern sugar factory, the Kwale International Sugar Company Limited (KISCOL) has finally started crushing cane after it got the green light from a Kenyan high court to resume production.
A protracted legal battle arising out of an order by the Kenya Bureau of Standards (Kebs) to order for the closure of the milling plant saw KiscoL carry the day in court after Justice Eric Ogola declined Kebs argument on closure.
Kiscol Outgrowers Society members led by its chair, Mr David Ndirangu said that the milling plant had started crushing cane last week after closure for one and a half years.
” We are seeing light at the end of the tunnel. This is early Christmas for our over 1000 outgrower farmers who had started to stare at defeat when Kebs got orders to shut down our milling plant,” Ndirangu said.
Ndirangu said that the investors at the milling plant had spent huge sums of money to put up a state-of-the-art factory and deploy Kenya’s most modern agricultural technology in both growing and harvesting cane.
” We had begun to lose hope. However, following court orders to reverse the closure decision, we are happy to report that operations to crush are on full steam,” Ndirangu said in an interview.
Ndirangu said that they are forging ahead with plans to make the Outgrower Society more vibrant.
KISCOL is a privately owned sugar manufacturer. It is one of the seven privately owned sugar manufacturers in the country.
The plantation and factory of KISCOL are located in Kwale County on the eastern coast of Kenya. This location, immediately south of the town of Kwale, along the Lunga-Lunga-Msambweni Road.
The location is approximately 53 kilometres (33 mi), by road, southwest of Mombasa, the second-largest city in Kenya.
In addition to crushing 3,000 tonnes of sugar cane daily, the complex has the capacity to co-generate 18 Megawatts of thermal electricity and produce 50,000 liters of ethanol per day.