Tanganda to invest $2mln in avocado storage facility as company diversifies crops

Tanganda to invest $2mln in avocado storage facility as company diversifies crops

MUTARE, October 14 (The Source) – Zimbabwe’s largest tea producer, Tanganda says it will invest $2 million in the construction of an avocado pack house at its Avontuur Estate to boost revenue as the company completes its diversification programme.

The facility, to be constructed in two phases is, expected to be completed in 2016 and will enable the company to add value to its crop. A nut processing facility will also be established during the same period.

Managing director, Timothy Fennell told The Source that the completion of the facilities would boost production in the next two to three years when the projects reach maturity.

He said the company’s diversification programme was almost complete with only 10 percent of the firm’s previously underutilised land at Chipinge Estates expected to be under crop by March next year.

Tea accounts for 90 percent of the company’s revenue, but the company has been forced to diversify to other crops due to falling global prices.

“The coffee pulpries at New Year’s Gift and Jersey estate have been completed and we are currently handling our first small crop,” he said.

“However, these efforts are not being helped by the fact that the world tea prices remain relatively low.”

Tanganda has since 2012 intensified production of macadamia nuts, coffee and avocadoes, as part of strategies to diversify risk from tea, its cash cow.