Aquaculture sector in Zambia growing rapidly
Nutreco and African Century Foods (ACF) have entered into a 75/25 joint venture in Zambia, 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. Skretting is Nutreco’s global brand for aquafeed.
Aquaculture in Zambia is developing at a rapid pace, in order to reduce the dependency on imported fish. A lack of high-quality fish feed is the key bottleneck in the further development of the regional aquaculture sector, which primarily consists of tilapia farming.
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. A substantial part of the capacity will be used to supply the Zambian and Zimbabwean tilapia farms of joint venture partner ACF, Africa’s largest fish producer with tilapia 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.
Harm de Wildt, managing director for Nutreco’s operations in EMEA: “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.”
Henry Pitman, CEO 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. Furthermore we will be able to increase our support to the development of aquaculture across the region. In Skretting, ACF is partnering with a worldwide leader in aquaculture feed.”