ZIMBABWE – Wine and spirits maker African Distillers (Afdis) says it has witnessed modest growth in volumes in the quarter to September, driven by demand for its cider and wine products.

Afdis is jointly owned by South Africa’s Distell and Delta Corporation. Other shareholders include Old Mutual Life Assurance and Stanbic nominees.

The company only started manufacturing ciders locally in 2014 and the majority of its wine range is made by Distell.

Without giving figures, Afdis managing director Cecil Gombera on Friday told The Source that ciders and wines were sales had improved but volumes for the spirits unit, which make up more than two thirds of the company’s business were under pressure.

“It is very difficult at the moment. The dictating factor is disposable incomes and those have taken a nose dive and add to that, the unavailability of cash.

The spirits have been rather flat but in the first quarter we witnessed some growth in the wines and ready to drink spirit coolers,” he said.

For the rest of the year, Gombera said the company expects a modest growth and would maintain current production levels.

“We have not scaled down production, we are trying all sort of things (such as) bringing new products onto the market and cutting down costs to try and ensure that the business remains viable,” said Gombera.

October 30, 2016; http://source.co.zw/2016/10/afdis-q1-volumes-up-on-wine-and-ciders-md/