Malaysia bets on new dairy project to reduce reliance on milk imports, create jobs

MALAYSIA – Malaysia’s Johor State Government and the East Coast Economic Region Development Council (ECERDC) have signed a collaboration agreement to develop a new project aimed at raising the country’s dairy production capacity.    Dubbed the JemaluangDairy Valley (JDV) project, the new project is part of the overall strategy in turning the East Coast Economic Region (ECER) into the ‘Dairy Valley’ of Malaysia.   The JDV project will be built on 275 hectares of land in Mersing, Joho, and will be modeled on the Muadzam Shah Cattle Research and Innovation Centre…

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SIG filling lines to be equipped with digital recipe management, SEALPAC launches new FlatMap packaging

SWITZERLAND –  All new SIG filling line systems and downstream units will from now onwards be equipped with built-in bidirectional digital recipe management, the company has revealed.   The Swiss-based equipment supplier noted that the new development is part of its digital transformation drive for food and beverage manufacturers.  Digital recipe management enables automatic recipe synchronization across all relevant parts of the filling line including the downstream.   Its incorporation into production lines has a number of benefits to manufacturers including a faster change to the next lot or product,…

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East Africa Breweries Limited targets to transition to use of clean energy by 2030 under US$199m plan

KENYA – East Africa Breweries Limited (EABL), subsidiary of British alcohol manufacturer Diageo, has revealed plans of investing Ksh 22 billion (US$199m) to facilitate its transition to use of green energy by 2030. According to reports by Business Daily, the manufacturer and distributor of Tusker, Chrome, Jonnie walker brands mulls to entirely shift from use of electricity from the national grid, Kenya Power and generate its own power from solar. EABL targets to generate at least 9.3 megawatts at its Ruaraka plant and 2.4-megawatt from solar power in Kisumu. Also,…

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Grand Parade Investments gets go ahead from Competition Tribunal to dispose Burger King

SOUTH AFRICA – The South African Competition Tribunal has approved the sale of Burger King South Africa and Grand Foods Meat Plant by Grand Parade Investments to international private equity fund Emerging Capital Partners (ECP) Africa. Following the green light, GPI can now move ahead with the disposal of the business to pan-African private equity firm ECP – pending all the final approvals. This comes after the deal hit a speedbump earlier this year due to concerns around a lack of BEE shareholding in the acquiring firm. The Competition Commission…

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Austrian food company Agrana invests US$29m in expanding starch production capacity

AUSTRIA – International food ingredients supplier Agrana has announced a €25 million (about US$29m) investment in additional capacity at its three starch factories in Austria.   According to a statement from the company, €12 million will be used in expanding capacity at the Agrana plant in Gmünd which is Austria’s only potato starch factory.  The investment involves building a spraying tower – a drying plant for infant formula, maltodextrin, and dried glucose syrup – in addition to installing a drum-drying plant for dehydrated potato products.  Expansion works in Gmünd are estimated to…

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South African agri-fintech HelloChoice gets equity investment from Standard Bank

SOUTH AFRICA – South Africa based digital fresh produce and agricultural market place, HelloChoice, has entered into a 25% equity deal with its long-partner Standard Bank. The investment will enable the agri-fintech to continue to operate its trading platform and promote market efficiency, solidifying its leadership position as the premiere market place. HelloChoice, founded in 2018 by Grant Jacobs and Graeme Jarvie, has modernised the traditional way of buying and selling agricultural produce by linking farmers and food producers directly with potential buyers through its platform accessed via its website…

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AfDB’s Special Agro-Industrial Processing Zones in Africa gets backing from financiers, developers

AFRICA – The African Development Bank (AfDB) has continued to garner support from key financiers and developers in the establishment of Special Agro-industrial Processing Zones (SAPZ) across the region. During the first partnership meeting, the parties unanimously agreed that the initiative can trigger a fundamental change in Africa’s economic transformation. The gathering brought together representatives from development finance institutions, private developers of Special Economic Zones, and other key global and regional players in Africa’s agri-business sector to share insights on how agro-industrialization can create massive job opportunities, boost agricultural productivity,…

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Condiment maker GBfoods attains full ownership of Africa’s operations

AFRICA – Global culinary products manufacturer GBfoods has undertaken a share buy-back at its African unit GBfoods, from private equity investment firm Helios Investment Partners. Established in 2017, GBfoods Africa was a joint venture created by Helios and GBfoods through the combination of GBfoods’ existing bouillon cubes business in Africa and the acquisition of brands Gino, Pomo, Jago, and Bama. Under the new deal, Helios has sold its 49% stake in the company to its partner and co-shareholder, after successful execution of its value creation strategy which has resulted in…

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Alpla invests in new PET recycling plant in Romania as Clearlake Capital Group to acquire Mold-Rite Plastics

ROMANIA –  Alpla Group, an Austrian-based global packaging, and recycling company, has invested in the construction of a recycling plant in Romania, as part of its sustainable packaging initiative.  The new plant and associated buildings and infrastructure is expected to cost approximately €7.5 million (US$8.79 million).  Alpla is undertaking the new project through a joint venture that includes Romanian manufacturer Ecohelp SRL and Swiss company United Polymer Trading AG.  The new facility will be based in Targu Mures, Romania, and will recycle plastic granulate from PET (rPET), which will then be used to produce…

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Unionplus inaugrates new dairy production plant, BelGioioso to acquire Italian cheese producer Polly-O

ITALY – Italian dairy company Unionplus Srl, a part of the Podini Group SpA in Bolzano, has inaugurated  its new production plant in Nogarole Rocca in the province of Verona.   According to company CEO Stefano Podini, the new facility will play an important role in the Podini Group’s project to expand, complete, and give continuity to the offer of raw materials of functional products to the Italian food industry.   He further noted that the new project represents his company’s courage and tenacity in business amid the enormous economic and political headwinds that have rocked the world during the pandemic period.…

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