The country’s largest food processing company, Inyange Industries Ltd, needs to increase output so as to take advantage of the East African Community (EAC) market, according to a top official from the Ministry of Trade and Industry.
“The biggest challenge Inyange has to deal with is to make sure they increase production,” Emmanuel Hategeka, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Trade and Industry said last week.
He made the remarks during the company’s launch of milk dispensers in Kigali.
“Inyange has taken a quality proposition which works for the higher end of the market that demands quality,” Hategeka said, noting that although the company has the capacity to process 100,000 litres of milk every day, only 35 per cent of that capacity is utilised.
Statistics show that Rwanda produces over 450 million litres of milk annually with 70 per cent of it going through unprocessed channels. This means that the country needs to step up efforts to enhance gains registered in dairy farming.
The Chief Operating Officer (CEO) of Inyange, Costas Polemitis, says that the firm has been bolstering its capacity since 2009 which saw the launch of a processing plant in 2010, thus providing it with a platform to expand to the regional markets.
“This increased capacity more than fulfils the local demand, but also gives Inyange the opportunity to expand its market to the neighbouring countries.”
Inyange products, which include milk, fruit juices and mineral water have seen their way to supermarket shelves in Uganda, Burundi, DR Congo, Congo Brazzaville, a move that is likely boost the country’s fragile export sector.
During the launch of the milk dispensers, the company’s Managing Director Senganda Kayitana, noted people would be able to draw milk from a dispenser by inserting a coin worth Rwf100 at sale points countrywide.
“The launch is meant to create awareness and widen the market,” he said, adding that three milk dispensers have already been installed in Kigali with plans due to install five more.
Each of the dispensers with a capacity of 300 litres cost the company a combined outlay of Rwf75 million.
Senganda is optimistic that with the introduction of milk dispensers, consumers would be acquainted with processed milk as well as make processed milk more affordable and safe.
The company says the initiative is also aimed at expanding its local market.