Nutreco and African Century Foods (ACF) have entered into a 75/25 joint venture in Zambia, named Skretting Zambia, for the production, sale and distribution of tilapia feed. The agreement is subject to regulatory approval. The joint venture will construct and operate the first dedicated fish feed plant in Zambia.
Aquaculture in Zambia is developing rapidly, particularly of tilapia, in order to reduce the dependency on imported fish, and a lack of high quality fish feed is the key bottleneck to further growth.
The new plant will be located at Siavonga, Lake Kariba, close to the major fish farms in Zambia and Zimbabwe, and will have an initial capacity of 25,000 tonnes of extruded fish feed. Much of the capacity will be used to supply ACF’s tilapia farms. The joint venture partner is Africa’s largest fish producer and has farms in Zambia, Zimbabwe and Uganda. Plant capacity will be expanded in a second phase with the aim of supplying the wider South-East African region.
“This joint venture is a new step in our commitment to the African market, adding to recent fish feed investments in Egypt and Nigeria. The production of high quality, extruded fish feed will further support the development of aquaculture in this region. It will help our customers to increase efficiency and profitability, and as a result will also mitigate the environmental footprint of the sector. In ACF we have found the right partner to establish a strong foothold in the South-East African market,” said Harm de Wildt, Managing Director for Nutreco´s operations in EMEA.
Henry Pitman, CEO of ACF said: “Having consistent supplies of high quality feed is critical to the success of our aquaculture operations in Zambia and Zimbabwe. This new feed mill will allow us to expand our operations from the current production levels of 10,000 tonnes and help to reduce our cost of production in line with our strategy to become the lowest cost producer of tilapia in the region.”