UGANDA – President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni yesterday joined the Hudani Manji family to officially launch another of their business line investments- Yo Kuku into the East African Market.
The integrated multi-billion agro-business facility in Semuto has specialized focus in poultry and the plant has focused on not only affordable but also high quality reliable supply chain of chicken in the country.
The plant comes as a remedy to President Museveni’s initiative of poverty eradication and prosperity for all through investing in agriculture and industrialization.
Hudani Manji Holdings believes that poultry as a daily source of proteins should be both accessible and affordable. Currently market prices are on the high end and chicken is consumed as a luxury for the average Ugandan with most enjoying it only on occasion.
Delivering his speech during the launch at the facility headquarters in Semuto, President Museveni pledged more support to the businesses of this kind.
“In my capacity, I want to mobilize for increased support to such companies that can flourish in Uganda because they have a ready market and also use our maize and soya crops as poultry feeds,” Museveni said.
Semuto is part of the Luweero triangle, a former war zone and the President expressed hios happiness at seeing the once war torn area flourishing and attracting investors.
“I am happy to come and commission this factory here in Semuto. This area was damaged by the war and has been struggling to attract investors. I am therefore happy that a former war zone has started to attract investment,” the elated President said.
Museveni also said Uganda is an agricultural economy but there is need for diversification as a boast to the financial system.
“Uganda is an agriculturalist economy but we also need factories to boast on the system with revenue and jobs creation,” he noted.
Yo Kuku as an agro-business is committed to providing the highest quality chicken product to all its customers. Core to the company’s day to day philosophy is the belief that the quality of the product that it supplied to its customers is of the utmost importance to the long-term success and growth of Yo Kuku.
Yo Kuku has a documented traceable system in place through the production system, incorporating all relevant local and international legal and safety requirements and qualitative standards as their competitive advantage.
The company also reorganises team cohesion and synergy with customers as the key need to providing the highest quality of value for money products.
Though the company still struggles with issues of exportation of their poultry products to foreign markets especially Kenya, Yo Kuku taps into local fast food restaurants as a ready market for their chicken products.
Already they have Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC), a global fast food franchise that is also operating three of several planned outlets in the Uganda.
They also supply products to Fresh Cuts, one of the leading meat processors in Uganda with a supply chain that covers clients within Uganda and East and central Africa.
Mr. Tasty also one of the fast growing footprints of fast food in locations all over Kampala with fried chicken as their primary offer and Cayenne Express have running supply business relations with Y0 Kuku.
President Museveni promised to interest his Kenya colleague-Uhuru Kenyatta to influence local investors in Kenya to start buying chicken produced from Uganda.
This according to the President will work in two dimensions; the East African Community-EAC treaty and the Uganda and Kenya business interests.
The factory employs over 200 people with most being residents of Semuto and the neighboring villages. According to Jackson Muluka the employees’ representative-the over 200 workers are both graduates and non-graduates.
“These would be unemployed but because we have the factory in our area, they are able to get jobs both formal and informal depending on one’s level of education. More than 90% of these jobs are going to locals of Semuto and surrounding villages,” Muluka narrated.
According to the Chairman Board of Directors of Hudani Manji Holdings, Alykhan Hudani, the facility is now focusing on enhancing efficiency both on production and creating a customer base.
“The facility focuses on market locally and regionally in the East Africa and South Sudan,” Alykhan said. The Kenyan neighbors according to their market research are not interested in doing business with the facility and this Alykhan said is one of the major challenges they face as they look for the poultry produce market.
Alykhan however thanked President Museveni for the stability in security that enables an environment that is welcoming to investors.
Hudani Manji Holdings limited is the parent company of the Yo Kuku brand, an independent and Ugandan family owned business with an investment of US$10,000,000.
The holdings group is heavily invested in the East African region with investments in hotels and tourism, food processing, distribution of FMCG’s, construction, real estates and telecoms.
The decision to invest in the poultry industry was a result of three considerations-the high demand for chicken in Uganda, the lack of reliable supply chains for chicken products and the fact that the sector consists on the large scale part of several small holders with unreliable supply chains that frustrate both wholesale and retail customers.
The Yo Kuku farm is located in Wobulenzi, Semuto about 50km outside Kampala City. The farm sits on 64 acres of typical green, Ugandan savannah and draws water from unspoiled reservoirs hundreds of feet below.
The holdings broke ground in November 2011 and 18 months later the integrated operation consisting of a broiler farm, feed mill and abattoir was commissioned.
Ensuring freshness and quality
The company boasts of an integrated approach to the production results in huge efficiencies of production and the high levels of automation that shortens production process time and the chicken that is more readily available to customers.
The company’s economies of scale mean more chicken can be produced more cost effectively which translates into lower prices to the end customer.
During processing, the chicken is put in cold storage process that ensures that the chicken that reaches the customer if fresh and of the best quality.
The company runs its own transportation department covering chilled and frozen distribution. This means distribution plan aims to service every corner of the country and to support a growing regional export market.
Growth of the farm will encourage increased investment in primary agriculture and processing of crops such as maize and soya beans.