SOUTH AFRICA – Futurelife, a South African health foods manufacturer wholly owned by food and beverage company PepsiCo South Africa, has inaugurated its cutting-edge manufacturing facility in the Dube TradePort Special Economic Zone (SEZ) located in Kwa-Zulu Natal.

This R75 million state-of-the-art factory near the King Shaka International Airport represents a significant investment in streamlining production processes, ensuring efficiency, and accommodating the evolving needs of the company’s diverse customer base.

The facility also houses a dedicated design hub for developing innovative new products.

According to Mark Bunn, PepsiCo South Africa Commercial VP and former Futurelife MD, the company’s dedication aims to contribute positively to the local community and the broader economy.

He emphasized the significance of this new factory in aligning with government initiatives aimed at driving sustainable economic development in KwaZulu-Natal.

The relocation of Futurelife’s operations from Pinetown to the Dube TradePort SEZ, constituting Phase 1 of a planned series of investments, represented a critical step in acquiring advanced machinery and equipment.

The transition positioned the factory to operate at elevated standards and produce high-quality goods efficiently.

According to Riaan Heyl, PepsiCo South Africa CEO, Phase 2 of the company’s investment strategy will focus on implementing a range of sustainability initiatives over the next 18 months.

“These initiatives, including photovoltaic solar power generation and rainwater harvesting infrastructure, will be integrated into the factory’s operations, aligning with Futurelife’s commitment to sustainability,” he noted.

The future Phase 2 plans include utilizing the factory’s extensive 8,500 m² roof space for solar energy generation.

“Solar energy systems will be seamlessly integrated into the facility to enhance sustainability and reduce carbon emissions. Additionally, rainwater harvesting initiatives will contribute to sustainable water practices within the factory.”

Siboniso Duma, KwaZulu-Natal Economic Development, Tourism, and Environmental Affairs MEC commended the collaborative effort between Futurelife and Dube TradePort, highlighting the role that the factory will play in advancing sustainable economic development within the province.

Futurelife’s journey began in KwaZulu-Natal in 2007 as a social project aimed at supporting malnourished and disadvantaged individuals across sub-Saharan Africa.

The company’s commitment to developing affordable and convenient nutrition products led to significant growth in the province and subsequent expansion throughout South Africa.

In addition, Bunn shared that over the past three years, Futurelife has emerged as the fastest-growing breakfast cereal and breakfast bar brand in South Africa, with one box of Futurelife cereal estimated to be sold every second in the country.

He added that the company’s flagship product, Futurelife Smart Food, initially developed as an instant, nutritionally balanced, and palatable food product, has paved the way for an expanded product range focused on nutrition and health.

Futurelife’s product offerings include bran flakes and bars, all based on uniquely formulated recipes designed to promote well-being.”