Namib Poultry Aims to Double Chicken Consumption19 August 2011
NAMIBIA - One company's new investment in hatching, broiler growing and feed production aims to meet the country's demand for chicken meat and double per-capita consumption.
A multi-million Namibian chicken project, which began construction in April this year, should be completed and in full production by July 2012, reports Namibian.
Namib Poultry Industries (NMI), once it begins full production mid-2012, aims to produce 250,000 chickens per week, enough to "serve the whole Namibian market".
According to the NMI group, 65 per cent of the funding for the 500-million dollar (NAD) project is local, although the group admitted that there "was a bit of resistance against funding for this project". The group initially approached local investors like the GIPF and the Development Bank of Namibia but say that no deals resulted from the talks. However, NMI has stressed that if the poultry plant is a success, "it will attract more investment opportunities".
For now, NMI Namibia re-invested NAD150 million from its own funds into the project. Locally owned Bank Windhoek approved loan funding to the value of NAD186.5 million towards the project and an additional NAD150 million investment was agreed to by the Industrial Development Corporation of Southern Africa.
Gys White, Managing Director of Namib Poultry Industries, explained that his company's focus will initially remain on the local market and to stimulate the market locally. He added that currently, per capita consumption of chicken per year is 8kg. By focusing on the local market, Namib Poultry "can easily double the per capita consumption to 15 kg a year", he said.
Koos Feirera, Managing Director of Namib Mills said South African companies, who currently supply the majority of the market "will survive" losing shares in the local poultry meat market, as their local market consumption requirements remain high.
Mr White told Namibian that the broiler plant will comply with European Union standards from production to employment standards. He explained that, apart from producing the final product, the company will also look at developing branded chicken shops from where their product will be distributed in Namibia.
The chickens will be raised on soya- and maize-based feed and no artificial growth stimulants will be added to the feed in order to comply with strict international standards on feed supplements.
The broiler plant will include a breeder farm with six rearing houses and 12 laying houses producing close to 325,000 hatching eggs per week. In addition, the plant will consist of a hatchery producing 250,000 day-old chicks per week. The broiler farm will include 35 houses where the day-old chicks are grown to be slaughtered in the abattoir.
Mr White said the plant is build on a precautionary principal, in order to minimise the risk of poultry diseases affecting the flock. Also, the chicken houses are designed so that chickens "walk freely" within it.
The construction phase of the project began in April and currently employs 298 unskilled Namibian employees and close to 50 skilled Namibian and South African employees. By the time production kicks off mid-2012, Namib Poultry Industries, situated between Windhoek and Okahandja at Klein Kapuka Farm, will employ a permanent staff of 450.
Namib Poultry is the third subsidiary of the NMI group, with Feedmaster and Namib Mills completing the group structure.
According to André Snyman, Managing Director of Feedmaster, the broiler plant includes an opportunity for Feedmaster to expand its business in Namibia. He explained that a new feed mill is being constructed at the broiler plant to the value of NAD65 million. The feed mill capacity will be 10,000 tonnes per month and will provide a total of 40 new job opportunities. The dedicated monogastric feed mill is capable of supplying 36,000 tonnes per annum to the local broiler industry, 11,000 tonnes per annum to the local layer industry and 9,000 tonnes per annum to the local pig industry.
Namibian reports that, in addition, the current Feedmaster factory will be upgraded during the second phase of the project to become a specialist cattle feed factory, to the tune of NAD15 million. Inclusive of the 36,000 tonnes of broiler feed, Feedmaster's annual total production will jump to 136,000 tonnes per annum.