Blue Ribbon to commence $7mln Harare plant expansion in H1

Blue Ribbon to commence $7mln Harare plant expansion in H1

HARARE, February 28 (The Source) – Blue Ribbon Industries says expansion of its Harare milling plant, which is expected to increase output by at least 80 percent, will commence during the first half of the year.

The milling company was a dominant player in Zimbabwe’s grain milling and food processing industry until it collapsed in 2012 due to funding constraints underpinned by a $2 million debt to the PTA Bank.

It was under judicial management, until last year when creditors approved a scheme of arrangement which saw Tanzanian miller Bhakresa inject $20 million into the group to revive operations.

Blue Ribbon general manager Yusuf Kamau told reporters that expansion of the Harare plant would cost the group an additional $7 million.

The plant already has an installed capacity of 100,000 tonnes per annum while its Bulawayo milling plant has the capacity to process 50,000 tonnes per year.

“We need to modernise and cannot continue with old equipment….we are having challenges with the current equipment which is always breaking down and when that happens it only adds on the costs,” he said.

Kamau said the expansion is expected to be complete by year end.