Releaf startup set to expand into more crops, additional West African markets

NIGERIA – Releaf, a raw material procurement & logistics startup, which develops proprietary hardware and software solutions to drive the industrialisation of food processing in Africa, is planning to expand into more crops and additional West African markets after closing its seed round earlier this year. Releaf was founded in 2017 and took part in the Y Combinator accelerator programme in Silicon Valley the same year, but only started operations in the oil palm space in 2019 and deployed its proprietary technology in January of this year. “Our hardware increases…

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E-commerce website Amazon set to launch in Egypt in 2021

EGYPT – American multinational technology company and e-commerce giant, Amazon, has revealed its intention to launch its Egypt website this year, to give entrepreneurs, business owners, and local sellers the opportunity to reach a larger number of customers nationwide. The company said the registration for local sellers would take place through the Amazon Seller Partner Center, a tool dedicated to managing their businesses. Amazon clarified that sales partners previously registered on Amazon’s Souq.com affiliate can access their accounts through the Amazon Seller Center. They will also be able to verify…

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South Africa’s alcohol bans impacted not only booze sales but also consumer behavior

SOUTH AFRICA – Further assessing the impact of South Africa’s latest liquor ban, a new NielsenIQ report has equated the loss to R7.6 billion (US$520m) during the four weeks it lasted from 28th June to 26th July 2021. Looking back at the financial fallout of the liquor ban, the report found that after the first prohibition (June 2020) the sector was able to recover two weeks of lost sales but these gains were short-lived and rapidly declined in the weeks that followed. Consumers also carefully considered which categories to purchase…

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South Africa’s beer major SAB reports double digit growths in both sales, profit despite alcohol bans

SOUTH AFRICA – Despite the multiple COVID-19 related alcohol ban, South African Breweries (SAB) realised strong consumer demand for its brands when alcohol trade was allowed. According to its parent company, Anheuser-Busch InBev (AB InBev) revealed that the beer maker registered double-digit growth in both profit and sales in the six months to end-June, a period which covered parts of two alcohol sales bans. The third alcohol sales ban since the Covid-19 pandemic started, began in December and ended at the beginning of February, while the fourth ban started towards…

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AB InBev’s sales exceed pre-pandemic levels, but inflation eats into Q2 profits

BELGIUM – World’s largest brewing company Anheuser-Busch InBev has reported top-line growth of 3.2% in quarter 2 2021, ahead of the same quarter in 2019.   The brewer of Budweiser, Stella Artois, and Corona, produced second-quarter sales of US$13.5bn, a 27.6 percent jump on an organic basis, which strips out the impact of currency movements, acquisitions, and divestitures, from the same period in the previous year.  In Q2, 2021, total volumes for the world’s largest brewer grew 20.8%, compared to the same quarter in 2020 while total volumes for the first half of the year grew 17%.  Revenues for…

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OPEC Fund signs US$30m loan to enhance productivity for smallholder farmers in Uganda

UGANDA – The OPEC Fund for International Development signed a US$30 million loan agreement with Uganda to help improve food security and incomes for more than 120,000 smallholder households in the northern and north-eastern regions engaged in the production and marketing of oil seeds (groundnuts, sunflower, sesame and soy). The National Oil Seeds Project is co-financed by the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and the Ugandan government. The Ugandan government’s latest Agricultural Sector Strategic Plan highlights oil seeds as part of the four strategic commodities expected to lead the…

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EABL narrowly misses complete performance turnaround with full year profit slipping by 1%

KENYA – The East African Breweries Limited (EABL) has reported 15% growth in revenue to Ksh 86 billion (US$791m), driven by smart investment behind brands, channel focus and innovations, which led to overall volume sales growing by 13%. The stellar top line performance was delivered on the back of a tough operating environment characterised by increased volatility due to COVID-19 imposed curfews and restrictions, depressed consumer spending and global supply chain disruptions. However, the company adapted to the pandemic, finding new routes to market including distributing products to consumers’ homes…

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Heineken expands global footprint with addition of India’s United Breweries

INDIA – Dutch multinational brewing company Heineken has added India’s United Breweries Limited (UBL) to its expansive portfolio of brewing companies.   The announcement by Heineken follows a recent annual general meeting where the company notified shareholders that it had obtained control of UBL after taking its shareholding from 46.5% to 61.5%.  UBL has a proud history dating back more than a century in India’s beer industry and is currently the undisputed market leader in the country with a population of more than 1 billion people.   The company has a strong network of breweries across…

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African milk processors Pearl Dairy, Blue Boat drive innovation in dairy sector with launch of new products

UGANDA – Uganda’s leading dairy processor, Pearl Dairy Farm Limited (PDFL), has expanded its milk offering with launch of its new UHT whole milk under its brand name Lato. The product launch comes days after the milk processor partnered with world’s leading food processing and packaging solutions company, Tetra Pak, to install a new Ush 9.25 billion (US$2.6m) packaging line. Leveraging on Tetra Pak’s Aseptic technology that keeps food safe and maintains its quality for a long duration of time, the new offering is said to have a shelf-life of…

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Dairy giant Danone partners with FAO to build sustainable food systems in Egypt

EGYPT – French multinational dairy company, Danone has signed a partnership with The UN-Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) aiming at improving nutrition, agriculture practices and food safety across Egypt for more sustainable food systems. The collaboration involves exchanging the most recent information on developing food safety problems as well as sharing data on food consumption and nutritional intakes in the North African country. Using Egypt as the pilot nation, the parties will use the information in order to enhance awareness and encourage the adoption of better eating habits. Furthermore, the…

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