South Africa’s RFG Holdings weathers COVID-19 storm reporting 46% rise in earnings

SOUTH AFRICA – RFG Holding, South Africa-based producer of fresh, frozen and long-life convenience meal solutions, has reported a double-digit growth in earnings in the six months to end March, despite the impact of Covid-19 on its operations. The food producer has reported a 46.4% increase in headline earnings to R119 million (US$8.53m) and headline earnings per share has gone up by 46.2% to 45.6 cents a share. The owner of market-leading brands Rhodes, Bull Brand, Magpie, Squish, Bisto, Hinds and Pakco, increased operating profit by 14.9% to R185 million…

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Global banana production in jeopardy as malignant disease develops resistance against pesticides

GLOBAL – The global banana production is under threat from Black Sigatoka fungus, a banana crop disease that is caused by the leaf fungus Pseudocercospora fijiensis. According to a recent study by Dutch researchers from Wageningen University & Research (WUR), the fungus is rapidly developing resistance to pesticides. To make matters worse, researchers have identified the fungus from seven banana-producing countries in Latin America, the Caribbean, Asia, and Africa, making it a global problem Cavendish bananas that account for more than 50 percent of world production – and dominate exports…

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Diageo pledges US$6.35m to support India’s fight against covid-19

INDIA- British multinational brewing giant, Diageo, has pledged £4.5m (about US$6.35 million) to support India’s COVID public health infrastructure during the second surge of the pandemic. The maker of Johny Walker, Black and White, and McDonnel said that the funds will go towards helping nodal Government Hospitals in 21 districts to set up Pressure Swing Adsorption (PSA) Oxygen Plants to create long-term oxygen capacity.  The company further noted that it will provide state governments fully equipped, prefabricated 16-bed mini-hospital units with PSA oxygen plants in 15 most critical districts. This…

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Proterra Asia expands presence in dairy sector with new investments in yogurt and oat milk businesses

ASIA – Proterra Investment Partners Asia has expanded its presence in Asia’s dairy sector by investing undisclosed amounts into the high-growth oat milk and yogurt segments. The private equity’s first investment was made into Simple Love (also known as Jian Ai), a fast-growing fresh yogurt brand in China, focusing on the premium low-temperature segment. Simple Love has grown to 2 percent market share (6th largest) in China, with sales growing at a compound annual growth rate of 109 percent over the past five years based on the company’s sales data.…

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Competition Authority of Kenya raises red flag on bread makers issuing misleading information to consumers

KENYA – Bread manufacturers in Kenya are on the radar of the Competition Authority of Kenya, after the authority found that some bakers are not meeting the provisions of the Competitions Act and other relevant standards. In pursuant to its consumer protection mandate, CAK undertook investigations targeting bread manufacturers in the country. In a statement containing findings from the investigations, the competition regulator has established unfair and misleading market conduct by some actors. CAK revealed that some of the bakers were not providing the manufacturing date/month on their bread wrappers…

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Thai Union group achieves 100% ownership of German sea food company Rügen Fisch

GERMANY – Thai Union Group, one of the leading sea food companies in the world and the number one producer of shelf-stable tuna products, has taken full ownership of Rügen Fisch, a German manufacturer of shelf-stable seafood products. The Thailand-based company acquired a majority, 51% holding in Rügen Fisch in 2016 and has now purchased the remaining 49% stake. Headquartered in Sassnitz, Rügen Fisch supplies ambient and chilled fish products to retailers across Germany through its brands, which include Rügen Fisch, Hawesta, Ostsee Fisch and Lysell. The company which currently…

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CCBA in Uganda kick-starts production at US$15m production line, launches new drink

UGANDA – Coca-Cola Beverages Africa in Uganda, has commenced production at its recently installed US$15 million production line, at the Century Bottling Company Namanve Plant. The beverage giant undertook the investment in a bid to boost its local production, supporting the Buy Uganda, Build Uganda agenda. In response to that, Coca-Cola has unveiled Minute Maid Fruity Boost Mango drink, the first product from the new facility, reports Nile Post. The milk and juice infusion drink was originally imported from Kenya, but became widely popular with many Ugandans, forcing the company…

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Leading food ingredients company Kerry to commence local production in Nigeria, partners with Cormart Ltd

NIGERIA – Cormart Nigeria Limited, a leading producer and distributor of chemical and food raw materials in Nigeria, has partnered with Kerry, to enable the world’s leading manufacturer of food flavours and ingredients to undertake local production in the West African nation. Both companies have been having a long-standing relationship which has seen Kerry avail its products in the Nigerian market over the years. The partnership will enable the multinational to be more sensitive and responsive to the local market requirements. To this end, Nigerian manufacturers will be able to…

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Kenyan organic feed, fertilizer maker Ecodudu breaks ground on new rearing facility

KENYA – Ecodudu, a Kenya-based waste-to-value company producing high-quality insect-based protein for animal feed and organic fertilizers from recycled organic matter, has commenced construction of its new rearing facility. According to the startup, the new facility will be on an 8-acre site in one of the largest fruit farms in Kenya, producing mostly mangoes and avocados. The new rearing center will be used to breed Black Solider Flies, as Ecodudu’s production processes leverage the larvae to convert food and organic waste into nutritious and protein-dense biomass. The residues are subsequently…

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Nestlé throws its weight behind EU fight against deforestation

SWITZERLAND – Swiss food manufacturing giant Nestlé has voiced its support for ambitious action by the European Union (EU) to tackle issues of deforestation that currently face a number of commodities such as coffee, cocoa, and palm oil. The EU plan includes increasing supply chain transparency and traceability for commodities that may be linked to deforestation such as the one mentioned above. Palm oil has for instance been considered as one of the major drivers of deforestation,  contributing to an estimated 5% of tropical deforestation in tropical areas, according to…

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