Gov’t earmarks $700,000 for concentrate plant

In a move to allow horticulture products to compete on international markets, government has set aside $700,000 to establish a concentrate plant before the end of this year.

In a move to allow horticulture products to compete on international markets, government has set aside $700,000 to establish a concentrate plant before the end of this year.

Local horticulture products have been limited on international market because of their unprocessed nature. The project is expected to process 20 percent of the total production by 2012.

The unity of concentrate products will be at Nyirangarama enterprises which has a new infrastructure but lacking the concentrate unity. Nyirangama is a local industry that produces juice commonly known as AGASHYA.

In an interview with Peter Muvara Chairman of Rwanda Horticulture Development Authority (RHoDA) the project is a public private partnership venture and negotiations are in advanced stages with Gerald Sina the owner of the enterprise on the cost sharing plan.

“The plant is relatively cheap because there is an existing infrastructure and the budget has been revised from the initial $7m to $700, 000,” Muvara said.

The cost will be shared between government and Nyirangarama enterprise.

According to a survey done by the RHODA less that than 10 percent of horticulture products from Rwanda are processed.

Muvara said that sufficient quantities of pineapples and passion fruits are available to produce 2,437 metric tonnes per year.

According to international trade centre in its report released recently, indicates that the demand for passion fruit juice remains high but the supply is very low.

After completion of the plant Eastern Democratic republic of Congo and Burundi are identified as potential markets since there are no fruit concentrates produced in these areas.

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