ETHIOPIA – Ethiopian agro-processing venture company, Horizon Plantations Plc is set to commence operations at its 900 million Br (US$26m) state of the art Sheger Bread & Flour factory.

The newly built factory resting on 4.1 ha has a processing capacity of 1.6 million loaves of bread a day/80,000 an hour.

Construction of the bakery commenced in August last year and it is furnished with automated machinery for both the bread and flour processing, imported from Italy.

It has four silos each with a storage capacity of 30,000 quintals (3,000 tonnes) of wheat, 12 ovens, 13 mixers, and two cooling towers capable of cooling 140,000 loaves of bread a minute.

The bakery will be served with flour from a plant that was built next to the bakery.

The flour factory has a production capacity of 2,224 quintals (222.4 tonnes) of flour a day, of which the bakery will utilize 1,200 quintals (120 tonnes) and the excess 1,024 quintals (102.4 tonnes) of flour will go to the market.

The company will source its wheat supply from Horizon Plantation’s farm and other cooperative unions, as well as through import, according to Sisay Debebe, project manager of the Sheger Bread & Flour Factory.

So far it has procured 150,000 quintals (15,000 tonnes) of wheat from Ukraine that will be used for three months of production, reports Addis Fortune.

To ensure smooth operations, it has 357 permanent employees, 50 janitors, 47 chauffeurs and 23 food vans each capable of carrying 24,000 loaves of bread at once.

The reports have also indicated that Horizon is also constructing a tea processing plant inside the premises of the bakery plant with an investment of 200 million Br (US$5.8m).

The plant is expected to be completed in six months providing 20,000 people with employment.

MIDROC Ethiopia, a private investment company and the parent company of Horizon is also building a 4 billion Br (US$117m) edible oil factory in the Summit area of the capital.

The processing plant that covers a land area of 50,000 square meters will have a capacity of handling 500 metric tons of oilseeds to produce 600,000 liters of edible oil in a day.

Other operations undertaken by Horizon Plantations Plc include, processing of coffee, spices, fruits, vegetables, pulses (haricot bean and soybean), maize and organic honey.

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