The Zambian Breweries has assured the Bars and Nightclub Owners Association of Zambia (BNCOAZ) that the expansion of its Mungwi road plant is to double its capacity and service delivery to both distributors and consumers.
Last month, Zambian Breweries announced that it would be investing in the expansion of its Mungwi road plant with 90% going to high tech sustainable equipment.
Following the announcement of its massive US$80 million investment, the nation’s largest brewer held a consultative meeting and tour of its Mungwi Road Brewing Plant with the Bars and Nightclub Owners Association of Zambia where they assured the BNCOAZ President and present members that the move is meant to improve on production and service delivery.
Zambian Breweries Acting Country Director Andrea Tennekoon stated that the investment was a significant accomplishment for the brewery.
“We have made this investment in response to Zambia’s growing market demand for our products. Zambia was among three countries in Africa zeroed in for expansion investment, along with South Africa and Nigeria,” he said
“We are pleased that this will allow us to double our capacity, making Lusaka, again the biggest brewery in Zambia, we’re more than hopeful that this will also help alleviate problems of stock shortages for our distributors and of course the BNCOAZ members,” he added
Mr Tennekoon explained that over the last decade the brewery has pumped over $400 million in upgrades and expansions of its production capacity and works have already commenced with new office buildings being erected and the replacement of some key brewing equipment being installed.
And Zambian Breweries Corporate Affairs Director Ezekiel Sekele noted that the works will take 18 months to complete and is hopeful to have the first brew from the new plant around the first quarter of 2024 when works are fully complete.
“We’re committed to our consumers and this investment will not only benefit them but everyone else involved in our supply chain like the farmers in our out-grower schemes who grow cassava, sorghum and barley, we are also still heavily investing in other projects such as water conservation projects to ensure we constantly have good water to produce high quality beer,” he said
Mr Sekele further noted that despite the strides made in increasing its capacity and productivity, illicit alcohol still poses a challenge, a 2021 EY study estimated that K21 Billion in tax revenue was lost due to illicit alcohol and smuggling of counterfeit products.
Mr Sekele has since appealed to members of the BNCOAZ to use their voice in lobbying for a fair playing ground for all involved in the industry, especially for the proper enforcement of the National Alcohol Policy.
Meanwhile the BNCOAZ President Peter Mwale expressed happiness with the new developments and assured Zambian Breweries of the association continued support.
“As you know without Zambian Breweries, our businesses would not exist. We are aware of the opportunities that this industry has created and its role in helping us with our livelihoods and alleviating poverty,” he noted
Mr Mwale added that the Association is delighted that the increased capacity will alleviate some of the supply issues that have been faced by Association members who have also pledged to continue supporting the brewery in its endeavors in order to allow for the positive impact on the economy to continue.