ZIMBABWE – Pure Oil Industries, maker of the renowned vegetable cooking oil brand Zimgold has announced plans to inaugurate state-of-the-art facility for bakers’ fat and margarine in June.

The Herald reported the oil manufacturer aims at becoming an integrated oil extraction and processing company as well as a one stop manufacturing company for cooking oil, soap, baker’s fat and margarine.

As demand for cooking oil in the local market grows, Pure Oil is investing to expand its operations to ensure adequate and steady supply of the products.

“Pure Oil Industries is not resting on its laurels and has invested in further value addition projects as the company has finished soap plant and has started selling soaps at a commercial scale.

“The company is actively exploring investing into a baker’s fat and margarine plant thereby becoming an integrated oil extraction and processing company.

In that realm creating further employment as well as more opportunities for both downstream and upstream industries,” said Pure Oil Industries head of operations Rodreck Musiyiwa to the Herald.

Pure Oil is taking advantage of the industrial policy initiatives the government which requires traders to obtain an import permit from government before importing basic commodities.

The policy deemed Statutory Instrument 64 of 2016 was established to boost industrial capacity utilisation, stimulating retooling and investment into new technologies in industries.

Musiyiwa noted that Pure Oil has invested in local cooking oil processing capability thereby reducing on the country’s dependency on imported oil products.

The company invested US$6 million in new projects last year to serve the growing local market, bringing its capacity from 1.4 million to 7 million litres of cooking oil per month.

Improved production is attributable to government’s efforts to restrict importation of goods that can be produced in the local market.

The government also recently engaged oil manufacturers for them to buy soya beans at import parity price of $400 per tonne in a bid to maintain the price of cooking oil and other related products at levels affordable to consumers.

Pure Oil has invested into contract farming including for soya, a move that will allow them get their raw materials straight from farmers in order to ensure there is adequate supply.

“In addition, Pure Oil also invested in an oil seed extraction plant thus providing a ready market for local soya bean farmers who unfortunately had no avenues to market their produce earlier,” added Musiyiwa.

Investing in local processing are strategies in meeting local demand which is increasingly rising.

In an effort to supplement local production, Zimbabwe is expected to import crude edible oil worth US$200 million this year as 50,000 tonnes of soya beans harvested fall short of national demand.