Kerry, the world’s leading taste and nutrition company, officially opened the largest and most advanced taste manufacturing facility on the African continent on Tuesday, 10 May 2022. The new R650m (€38m) facility is located in Durban, South Africa, and will produce sustainable nutrition solutions that will be consumed across the African continent.
The official opening was attended by Deputy Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition (DTIC), Nomalungelo Gina; KwaZulu-Natal Economic Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs MEC, Ravi Pillay; and Ambassador of Ireland to the Republic of South Africa, Her Excellency Fionnuala Gilsenan, plus eThekwini Municipality’s Executive Committee Member and Chairperson of the Governance Committee, Councillor Nkosenhle Madlala.
Located in Hammarsdale, Durban, the new 10 000 m² facility is one of the company’s most environmentally efficient manufacturing sites with numerous sustainability features including low energy usage equipment, solar power generation to reduce consumption from the local grid, waste heat capture and efficient water capture, reuse and reduction.
Commenting on the opening, Edmond Scanlon, CEO Kerry Group, said: “The opening of the facility in Hammarsdale is a significant step forward in helping to realise our vision of creating a world of sustainable nutrition. For 50 years, Kerry has focused on meeting local consumer needs grounded in great taste – one of the most important criteria in any food or beverage. Our suite of world leading technologies combined with our expertise and now this state-of-the-art manufacturing facility ensures that we can continue to work with our customers to produce great tasting, nutritious products that are respectful of our planet.”
The project is recognised as a key strategic investment, in the region of Durban, and within South Africa’s food manufacturing industry. It has been included as part of the South African Presidential investment drive to stimulate sustainable, equitable and inclusive growth as the foundation for socio-economic transformation in the country.
“As the DTIC, we are excited about this investment because it aligns very well with our re-imagined industrial strategy. As a department, we undertook to support improved industrial performance, through localisation, dynamism and competitiveness of local companies,” said Gina. “Our economic vision is to lift the rate of inclusive economic growth, and investments such as this will assist us to achieve these objectives.”
Invest Durban together with other spheres of government, and organized business bodies played key roles in positioning the region as an attractive Metro destination for high-value-add, export-oriented production. The eThekwini Municipality is therefore extremely pleased with these efforts for and by a global firm like Kerry Foods. The Kerry Group’s first enquiries involved our teams directly, and we have both been intimately involved in all aspects of building construction, local supplier engagement, local finance arrangements, tax & customs support, through to final factory launch this week. Invest Durban will continue to work with Kerry Foods as part of the City’s Key Investor Aftercare Programme.
Kerry is also expanding its Development and Application Centre in Nairobi, Kenya to further support customers in East Africa and the development of sustainable food processing for the continent.
Paul Hewitt, Vice President, Sub Saharan Africa Kerry Group said: “Kerry has had a presence in South Africa since 2011 and our success has been based on our ability to deliver truly authentic African taste by identifying traditional food and flavours and reimagining it into today’s modern context. More than understanding consumer taste, we are committed to predicting global and regional trends and innovating with our customers to lead the industry towards the next generation of sustainable African food and nutrition. South Africa is in a unique position to service East, Central as well as West Africa and we look forward to working with food and beverage companies to create products that will be enjoyed across the continent.”
With Kerry’s innovation expertise, solutions portfolio and sustainability commitments, Kerry ultimately aims to decrease the environmental and social impacts of the food industry value chain so that consumers everywhere can make better, healthier choices and leave a better world for future generations.