The cashew-nut processing plant which is owned by Chinese investors based in Hong Kong, will process 27 metric tons of cashew nuts per day and will target exporting to China and other countries.
Speaking to Property Watch last week after President John Magufuli visited the factory, Yalin General Manager, Sulaiman Millanzi said the factory has a surface area of 6,429.2 square meters.
“We are on schedule to start operations if we get a few utilities in place such as water and electricity,” Millanzi said while revealing that in phase one, the plant will employ 250 people.
Phase one’s processing machines will have capacity of 6,000 metric tons per annum and will process and roast the nuts. He said all the machines have already been import with fitting due to commence soon.
“People will work in various sections of the factory after getting training relating to their job description,” the Yalin GM added. He said construction work of the plant that officially started last year is at final stages while recruitment of staff is ongoing.
Millanzi further noted that Yalin investors chose to come to Tanzania because of good investment climate and government’s push for industrialization saying demand for processed cashew-nuts globally is also high.
“The demand is very huge for cashew nut products in the global market including China and Asia hence our decision to invest in the factory,” Millanzi affirmed.
China which is one of the world’s biggest markets for cashew-nuts does not grow the commodity but relies on imports mainly from Africa. The Asian nation has a huge network of cashew-nuts processing factories.
The company also plans to use cashew-nut husks to produce different products such as snacks, domestic utensils, produce oil, protein flour that will be sold both in the local and international markets.
“We have already done it in China and we will do it in Tanzania as well because we want to give more value to the commodity to benefit the country and Mtwara residents as we implement government’s semi-industrialized plans by 2025,” Yalin GM.
Speaking after laying a foundation stone at the plant’s site, President Magufuli ordered state utility firm, Tanesco and Mtwara Urban Water Supply and Sewerage Authority, to immediately supply water and electricity to the company so that it start operations by May.
President Magufuli also ordered Tanesco in Mtwara to refund Yalin 27m/- which the company had paid to purchase a transformer to supply the factory with electricity.
“We want to create employment for Tanzanians, reduce poverty, improve people’s lives in Mtwara region through industrialization,” Magufuli said warning state utility officials against frustrating investors.