Sh.15 billion Kisumu brewery to commence production next year
Construction plans for the Sh.15 billion East African Breweries Limited (EABL) in Kisumu town are on schedule, with production set to commence next year.
Speaking during a status update on the project whose ground-breaking was presided over by President Uhuru Kenyatta last August, Kenya Breweries Limited Managing Director, Jane Karuku said the new plant will provide an expanded market opportunity mainly for sorghum farmers in Nyanza region.
The plant, she said, will be heavily reliant on sorghum among other raw materials sourced from locals.
Speaking during current development phase, Karuku said Kisumu County supplied construction materials and labour force supply, as part of the company’s local sourcing commitments.
“To spur the local economy, construction materials and majority of those providing labour force at the construction site are being sourced from Kisumu County,” he said.
“We have made tremendous progress at the new brewery site since July, and we look forward to completing the construction works on time,” said Karuku.
In July this year, President Kenyatta and Diageo Global Chief Executive, Ivan Menezes commissioned development of the ultra-modern brewery in Kisumu.
The brewery plant is the single largest such project in Nyanza region and Kenya in decades and is set to be an engine of economic development and catalyst for the lakeside city and the neighboring counties upon completion.
Speaking at a stakeholder’s session, Kisumu County Governor, Prof. Anyang Nyong’o hailed the project and reaffirmed the county’s support for the project sighting the socio-economic impact of the project to the county.
“The County fully supports this project and we look forward to enjoying its economic impact and the ripple effects of the brewery plant to the various sectors including agriculture, manufacturing, construction and transportation, thereby positively transforming livelihoods of our people,” the governor noted.
The plant will initially produce Senator Keg made using locally-sourced sorghum, and KBL targets to recruit over 15,000 sorghum farmers with guaranteed market for the crop.
This will lift demand for sorghum and in turn support many small-scale farmers
The project will also provide greater production capacity to meet the anticipated demand for affordable and healthy beverage which would effectively compete, and with time eliminate illicit brews.
More jobs are also expected be created when the brewery construction is completed and operations begin.
“The plant is projected to be completed by January, 2019, and approximately 100,000 direct and indirect jobs will result from this plant” added Karuku.
The EABL is East Africa’s leading branded alcohol beverage business with a collection of beer, spirits brands and adult non-alcoholic drinks.
The Company is one of the largest Kenyan tax payer remitting over Sh.40 billion in taxes to the exchequer.
By George Kaiga