IVORY COAST – Grands Moulins d’Abidjan (GMA), Ivorian agri-food company specializing in the production and marketing of flour and wheat products, has made an investment of £2m (US$2.26m) in 6-megawatt generators.

The move is aimed to ensure the subsidiary of American group Seaboard Corporation, continues with its operations uninterrupted despite major power outages faced in the country.

According to the miller, in April 2021, Ivory Coast experienced multiple power cuts impacting its production capacity by more than 70%.

In response to this challenge, the generators are set to cover the company’s entire activities to ensure effective and efficient running.

This investment, which guarantees the reliable supply of electricity for the company and the resumption of its activities, has been facilitated by the relationship of trust between the Ivorian government and Les Grands Moulins d’Abidjan, through its foreign and local partners of the Seaboard group.

“Les Grands Moulins d’Abidjan will thus be able to continue to supply its customers, guarantee the job stability of its employees and the confidence of its stakeholders in order to give it an advantage in the local and regional market,” highlighted GMA.

GMA was created in 1963 shortly after the independence of Côte d’Ivoire and bought by the American group Seaboard Corporation in 2018.

With a turnover of more than 50 billion CFA francs (US$86m) and more than 250 employees, the company plays a leading role in the Ivorian economy.

Ivory Coast generates power from cocoa waste

Further offering remedy to the economy derailing event, Ivorian specialist in the biomass sector, Société des Energies Nouvelles (SODEN), has partnered with US Trade and Development Agency to establish a cocoa-powered renewable energy plant.

The project, which will innovatively put to use the cocoa-waste is expected to cost about 131 billion West African CFA francs (US$244m).

Following successful pilot projects, the cocoa waste is now set to become a significant part of Ivory Coast’s transition to renewable energy.

SODEN has begun work on the biomass plant located in Divo, a town that produces a large share of the country’s cocoa, reports BBC.

It will be able to produce between 46 and 70MW of electricity per year with Yapi Ogou, Managing Director of SODEN indicating, “This plant alone will be able to meet the electricity needs of 1.7 million people.”

Feasibility studies showed that the facility could reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 4.5 million tonnes, compared with existing power sources.

Ivory Coast currently gets most of its power from fossil fuels, with natural gas generating 70% of its energy.

The country has a target increasing usage of renewable energy sources to 42% and cut greenhouse gas emissions by 28% by 2030.

In a country with fast-growing energy needs, innovations such as the use of cocoa waste could make all the difference.

The Divo biomass power plant will be West Africa’s largest and is set to be complete by early 2023.

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