SA wine industry lobby organization Vinpro heads to court to fight booze ban

SOUTH AFRICA – South Africa’s Wine body, Vinpro has launched a court action to lift liquor ban in the country’s wine-making hub, Western Cape, citing that the region’s Covid-19 numbers are currently “dropping fast”. “Vinpro is relieved that the numbers of new infections, active cases and hospital admissions are now dropping fast across the country, but particularly in the Western Cape. In these circumstances, the liquor ban is simply no longer justified in the Western Cape,” the organisation said in its latest statement. The non-profit body representing South African wine…

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Ethiopia’s Green Agro Solutions partners with Commercial Bank of Ethiopia to digitize financial transaction by farmers

ETHIOPIA – Green Agro Solutions, an agribusiness service provider in Ethiopia offering a one stop shop for farming solution, has on-board the services of Commercial Bank of Ethiopia (CBE) on its digital platform known as Lersha to enable farmers carry out secure and efficient financial transactions. Lersha is a digital platform that gives rural farmers access to information and services pertaining to their agricultural practices. In addition, it enables farmers to procure raw materials and machinery. Weather forecasts, pest detection, advisory service and mechanisation equipment to help the farmers increase…

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Swiss mineral expert Omya launches new ingredients to support development of plant-based foods

SWITZERLAND – Swiss mineral expert Omya has launched a range of new “natural and Vegan friendly” ingredients to support the development of the emerging plant-based food industry. The new ingredients from the swiss mineral company include; Purple Sweet Potato Concentrate, Safflower Extract, and Yeast Extracts. Omya says that the Covid-19 crisis has made people realise, once again, that the world is a holistic system that has to be treated with care. This realization, according to Omya, made people to be concerned about the impact of their food on the environment…

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Walmart dispatches robots to select US stores to fasten online order fulfillment

US – American multinational retail corporation Walmart has announced plans to use robots in select stores across the United States to handle surging online orders, cut delivery times and significantly reduce operational costs. The US gaint says that the robots will be dispatched to dedicated warehouses which will be located within or next to existing stores where they will be involved in fetching items such as boxed and frozen food for online orders. The company however noted that Human workers will still be required at the stores and will be…

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Agribusiness company JR Farms builds livestock feed processing plant in Zambia

ZAMBIA – JR Farms Limited, an agribusiness venture undertaking food processing, agro-commodity trading and agro-consultancy in Africa has injected about US$500, 000 in the establishment of a stock feed-processing plant in Zambia. The facility which is expected to be operational in the first quarter of this year, will focus on producing affordable livestock feed for poultry, cattle and goats among others. It will have a processing capacity of 20 tonnes per hour and avail 600 direct and indirect jobs for the local people in Makeni, Lusaka, reports Daily Mail Zambia.…

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Flour Mills of Nigeria continues to exhibit stellar performance reporting 31% revenue growth in Q3

NIGERIA – Flour Mills of Nigeria (FMN), one of Nigeria’s leading foods and agro-allied groups has reported a 31% revenue growth in the third quarter ended December 2020 to N200 billion (US$526.3m), with all segments growing by 25% plus. Its year-to-date revenue at 31 December 2020 was N555 billion (US$1.4 billion), 31% rise from the corresponding period last year. The company’s profit before tax at year-to-date of N23.6 billion (US$62.1m) was ahead of the full year 2019/20 profit before tax of N17.5 billion (US$46m). The owner of Iconic brand, Golden…

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Nestle’s popular snack brand Smarties switches to 100% recycled paper packaging as core cereal brands minimize plastic use

GERMANY – Swiss food manufacturing giant Nestlé has announced that its popular Smarties brand is now using recyclable paper packaging for its confectionery products worldwide. The announcement follows a decision by Nestlé Cereals UK that well-known cereal brands including Cheerios, Shreddies and Shredded Wheat are set to reduce the amount of plastic used in packaging by more than 600 tonnes annually. Nestlé Cereals UK said the new packs will also mean that fewer lorries are required to transport the products to stores across the UK, saving an estimated total of…

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South Africa’s expansive blueberry orchard United Exports gets US$3.6m support from IFC, FMO

SOUTH AFRICA – United Exports, leading producer and exporter of blueberries in South Africa has clinched a €3 million (US$3.6m) loan financing from IFC and the Dutch entrepreneurial development bank (FMO) to support its ongoing capital expenditure projects and help maintain local farmers’ access to markets and employment. The €3 million (US$3.6m) loan includes €1.5 million (US$1.8m) from IFC and a €1.5 million (US$1.8m) loan from FMO. United Exports sells its blueberries under its proprietary OZblu brand within South Africa and exports roughly 90 percent of its output to markets…

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US packaging giant Ball to build US$205m plant in Czech Republic to bolster output in Europe

Czech Republic – Packaging manufacturing conglomerate Ball Corporation has announced plans for a new €170 million (US$ 205.70 million) aluminium can plant in the Czech Republic, as it looks to boost its output in the EMEA region. The company says that it intends to begin construction of the new facility in the spring of this year and to launch operations in October 2022. The plant, which will be located near Pilsen, in the west of the Czech Republic, is expected to employ up to 200 people and aims to meet…

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Collaborative innovation in food packaging industry key in achieving sustainability goals – Tetra Pak

SWITZERLAND – Swedish-Swiss multinational food packaging and processing company Tetra Pak is championing a new partnership ecosystem model where the entire food packaging industry works in close collaboration. Tetra Pak says that the new collaborative innovation model involving leading paperboard producers and other stakeholders in the food industry is aimed at tackling industry’s sustainability challenges. According to a recent research, the global food supply chain system is responsible for 26% of global greenhouse gas emissions with a third of all food lost or wasted somewhere in the supply chain. To…

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