Ecommerce platform Maxab raises US$40m Series A round to expand to other markets

EGYPT – Maxab, a Cairo-based B2B ecommerce platform, has announced that it has raised US$40 million in a Series A round led by RMBV, a North African-focused impact investor. IFC, Flourish Ventures, Crystal Stream Capital, Rise Capital, Endeavour Catalyst, and Maxab’s previous investors Beco Capital and 4DX Ventures all participated in the purchase. The startup intends to use the fresh funding to grow across Egypt’s major cities by the end of the year, followed by other markets in the region. According to the Egyptian firm, the funds will be utilized to scale…

Read More

Yalelo Zambia welcomes new boss Ulric Daniel to steer company into future growth

ZAMBIA – FirstWave Group, Africa’s leading vertically integrated aquaculture firm, has announced the appointment of Ulric Daniel as the company’s Country Director in Zambia. FirstWave, specializes in tilapia production, distribution, and retail through its flagship company Yalelo Zambia and recently inaugurated Yalelo Uganda. It also undertakes feed production through Aller Aqua Zambia. With the appointment, Ulric Daniel will oversee FirstWave’s feed and fish production value chain activities in Zambia through Yalelo Zambia and JV Aller Aqua Zambia. He takes over the leadership from Bryan McCoy, who has handed over the…

Read More

Saputo strengthens position in UK dairy market with acquisition of Wensleydale Dairy

UK – Montreal-based Canadian dairy company Saputo has agreed to acquire the activities of UK cheesemaker Wensleydale Dairy Products for £23 million (US$31.84 million) to strengthen its position in the UK dairy market.   The company operates two facilities in North Yorkshire reportedly uses its own ‘unique’ cheesemaking starter cultures to produce a variety of specialty and regional cheeses. Saputo says that the Wensleydale Dairy Products range will complement and broaden its existing portfolio of British cheeses, which includes Cathedral City cheddars.  Commenting on the acquisition, Lino Saputo, chair of the board and CEO, Saputo said: “Wensleydale Dairy Products is home to an…

Read More

Vietnam rice exports to plummet despite projected rise in production

VIETNAM – Vietnam is losing its market share for white rice to other competitors such as India and Thailand due to uncompetitive prices.  This is according to a recent Grain and Feed update by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).   In the report, USDA officials note that despite Vietnam white rice export prices declining from their peak of US$520 per MT in January to a low of US$490/MT in May 2021, prices of Vietnam five percent broken white rice continued to maintain a $100 per metric ton premium over India rice.  They further…

Read More

Soft beverage manufacturer Schweppes Zimbabwe earmarks US$35m investment in citrus production

ZIMBABWE – Schweppes Zimbabwe, manufacturer and distributor of non-carbonated beverages in Zimbabwe, is seeking to invest US$35 million in the next 10 years into a 2 700-hectare citrus plantation. This is in a bid to increase production and valued addition at its Beitbridge Juice Processing Plant. Shweppes, operating under a licence from The Coca-Cola Company Limited, currently processes 20,000 tonnes of fruits annually, against a target of at least 40,000 tonnes. The deficit is due to limited supply of raw materials in the local market, necessitated by the fact that…

Read More

Indian milk brand Amul beats pandemic odds to record 2% growth in revenue for FY21

INDIA – The Gujarat Co-operative Milk Marketing Federation Ltd (GCMMF), which markets dairy products under the Amul brand has beaten all odds to record a 2% rise in revenue for the 2021 Financial Year (FY21).   According to a statement released by R S Sodhi, Managing Director at GCMMF, the cooperative’s total turnover rose to Rs 39,200 crore (about US$5.2 billion) from Rs 38,550 crore (about US$5.189 billion) recorded in the same period last fiscal year.  During FY21, Sodhi said the company benefitted from a rise in demand for its branded consumer products like fresh…

Read More

Preference for corn by Chinese farmers to result in depressed production of Sorghum and Barley

CHINA – A mix of high prices and government policies encouraging or mandating the planting of additional corn acreage has influenced Chinese farmers into planting more maize at the expense of Sorghum and Barley.   Area planted to corn in Heilongjiang, one of China’s most important corn producing provinces, increased by 1.1 million hectares this year, or by 27 percent year-over-year, according to the Heilongjiang Agricultural Bureau.   Nationwide, area planted to corn is expected to increase by 2.1 million hectares this year, or by 6.2 percent year-over-year.  Due to the increased acreage Chinese corn, production for MY2021/22…

Read More

Morocco to reduce reliance on grain imports in anticipation of triple grain out-put in 2021/22

MOROCCO – Morocco is set to register a ten-year high production average of grains in MY 2021/22 by 26.3%, following a bumper harvest due to favourable weather conditions. This was revealed by the Ministry of Agriculture, forecasting total wheat and barley production at 9.8 million metric tons, reflecting a vast increase of 206%, from production out-put registered in MY 2020/21. The total production estimates for the period under review include, 4.8 MMT of common wheat, 2.4 MMT of durum wheat, and 2.6 MMT of barley. In a bid to protect…

Read More

Uganda beverage maker Hariss International expands Oner Fruit Juice offering with launch of new pack sizes

UGANDA – Hariss International Limited, Uganda’s fast-growing manufacturers of food and beverages, has fostered convenience in its drink offering with launch of additional pack size for its renowned Oner Fruit Juice. The popular drink which is available in Mango, Apple and Berries flavours, was previously coming in a 500ml PET bottle only and is now available in a family size 1 litre bottle and an ‘on the go’ 200ml bottle. The innovation was driven by the increasing market demand from a cost-friendly, convenient and functional size of the product, meeting…

Read More

Nestle tops global access to nutrition index for second time in a row

SWITZERLAND – Nestlé, the world’s largest food and beverage company, has emerged the first in the 2021 global Access to Nutrition Index (ATNI), achieving a score of 6.7 out of the possible 10.  The Index assesses, after every three years, the world’s largest global food and beverage manufactures and their contributions to addressing malnutrition.    In 2021, Twenty-five leading F&B manufacturers were included and assessed on their commitments, practices, and disclosure – with regards to governance and management; the production and distribution of healthy, affordable, accessible products; and how they influence consumer choices and behavior.  This…

Read More