Kenya Tea Development Agency board names Wilson Muthaura as group CEO

KENYA – The Kenya Tea Development Agency Holdings board has announced the appointment of Wilson Muthaura as the group CEO with effect from October 1, 2021. Until the appointment, Mr. Muthaura has been the acting Group CEO of KTDA Holdings Limited, taking over the position from Lerionka Tiampati, who resigned as the head of the agency in September. Prior to his tenure at KTDA, Mr. Tiampati was a banker before moving to Ketepa, a subsidiary of KTDA, as Chief Executive Officer in 2001. Four years later, in 2004, he moved…

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Unilever starts sale of tea business unit after restructuring, seeks to divest from Kenya’s Limuru Tea

KENYA – Multinational consumer goods company, Unilever is seeking to divest from its Kenyan tea subsidiary, Limuru Tea, to a new owner Holdco UK Limited (TeaCo). The board of the company has approved the transfer subject to regulatory approvals, reports The Star. The move follows a decision by its parent firm Unilever Group to separate its global tea business including tea plantations to become a separate entity and divest in most markets. The maker of the popular Lipton, Brooke Bond and PG Tips brands, had initially indicated that it will…

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Kenya’s tea export volumes increase by 19% despite decline in production

KENYA – Kenya’s tea production in the half-year to June 2021 declined by 26 million Kgs compared to the corresponding period last year on the back of unfavourable weather condition. This was revealed by the Tea Directorate, indicating that 274 million Kgs of green leaf were delivered to factories between January and June, 9% down from 300 million Kgs in a similar period of 2020. It attributed the decline in volumes to dry conditions and extremely cold weather that impacted negatively on the crop. However, there was an increase in…

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Zimbabwe based Organic Africa opens multi-million-dollar herbal tea processing factory

ZIMBABWE – Zimbabwe has welcomed a new herbal tea processing factory constructed by agriculture concern, Organic Africa. The multi-million-dollar facility is aimed to promote value addition which will in turn ensure the players along the value chain get the best returns from the produce. Termed as one of the largest herbal tea factories in Southern Africa by The Herald, the facilities will enable Organic Africa to get a share of the lucrative market segment. The herbal tea market was valued at US$ 3.289 billion in 2020 and is projected to…

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Kenya’s tea production to receive a boost as agency imported fertilizer arrives

KENYA –   Kenya’s tea production is set to receive a major boost after key fertilizer arrived in the country in August for distribution to some 650,000 small scale farmers affiliated to factories managed by the Kenya Tea Development Agency (KTDA).  KTDA chairman David Gichoga says the 1.5 million bags consignment has docked in the post of Mombasa and will be distributed to farmers in the shortest time before the onset of the short rains.  Speaking in Mombasa during an induction workshop for 54 tea factories on good corporate governance, Gichoga said there is need to maximize…

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SA’s Rooibos becomes first African commodity to receive EU’s Protected Designations of Origin certification

SOUTH AFRICA – The South African rooibos industry has officially received the certificate of registration for Protection Designation of Origin (PDO) in the European Union (EU). A PDO identifies and links a product to a region, associating its quality and reputation to that area. Rooibos also known as bush tea or red tea, is a caffein free herbal tea and antioxidant food ingredient originating from the endemic South African fynbos plant, aspalathus linearis, that has become popular on the global markets. With the certification, Rooibos will now receive the same…

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Kenya’s tea exports rise in first four months despite depressed leaf prices

KENYA – Kenya’s tea exports rose by 18.9 percent in the first four months of the year to 202.75 million Kilograms (Kgs), compared to 172.43 million Kgs recorded during the same period of last year. According to the Tea Directorate, the total export volume for the month of April 2020 was 14% higher compared to 43.55 million Kgs of April 2020, reaching 49.45 million Kgs. Pakistan was the leading buyer of Kenyan tea in the first four months, importing 73,587,466 tonnes, a rise from 58,293,459 tonnes purchased in the previous…

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Processor of Kenya’s premium tea brand Kericho Gold gets backing from European financiers Si, IFU, Proparco

KENYA – Global Tea & Commodities, one of the fastest growing and fully integrated tea, coffee and macadamia producing companies with operations in Kenya and Malawi, is set to receive growth capital from three European financiers. The three firms – French development finance institution Proparco, Danish sustainable investment fund IFU and London based investment and advisory firm Si Advisers LLP, have inked a financing agreement with the packer of premier tea brands, Kericho Gold and Baraka Chai. Global Tea founded in 1992, trades in Kenya through its subsidiary Gold Crown…

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Smallholder tea farmers to get direct ownership of Kenya Tea Development Agency Holdings

KENYA – Individual smallholder tea farmers affiliated with the Kenya Tea Development Agency Holdings PLC (KTDA Holdings PLC) will now own direct shareholding of the company alongside their respective 54 tea factory companies, further cementing their ownership and proprietorship in the organisation. This comes after KTDA shareholders amended the company’s Articles of Association to enable the allotment of the company’s shares to individual farmers under a new category of shareholders known as “Tea Farmers.” Each of the 54 Tea Factory Companies, through their respective portions of their 5 million bonus…

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Kenyan firm Sasini bounces back to profitability despite decline in half year revenue

KENYA – Sasini, a Kenyan agricultural firm that produces and exports tea, coffee, macadamia and avocado has bounced back to profitability, posting a net profit of Ksh.122million (US$1.13m) in half-year period ended March 31 2021, a recovery from a Ksh13 million (US$121,000) loss attained in the same period last year. The firm, according to reports by Citizen Kenya, attributes the improved performance to gains from non-sales income, with the group ‘s operating activities yielding in gains of Ksh.177.9 million (US$1.66m) from a loss of Ksh.7.3 million (US$68,000) previously. The growth…

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