Indian meat processor sets up plant in Ethiopia

Addis Ababa, Jan 6: Allana Sons, one of the largest Indian meat processing companies, has invested $20 million to establish its first meat processing and exporting plant in Africa.

The company has made its base in Ethiopia’s Ziway town in Oromiya state of Ethiopia, 159 km from capital Addis Abeba.

The company signed an agreement Wednesday at the ministry of industry with ETG Designers and Consultants Plc, a local private firm, for establishing the modern meat processing and exporting plant. India’s Ambassador to Ethiopia Sanjay Verma, who is concurrently accredited to Djibouti and the African Union, was present.

“The arrival of Allana will add more value to the Ethiopian economy, following the demand for meat production in the country, and to the existing $5 million investment by Indian companies,” Verma said.

The company hopes the integrated meat plant will start production by September 2014, slaughtering around 200 cattle (25 tonnnes) and 5,000 sheep/goats (50 tonnes) a day.

Initially, the plant is expected to produce 75 tonnes of boneless meat daily ready for export, according to Aman Khan, who heads the Allana Group in Ethiopia.

“Ethiopia has the largest livestock population in Africa and it is striving to achieve benefits from the sector and we are just adding our part to the economy and to the development of the sector in the country,” said Khan.

Khan said that the Allana Group would strive to add value to the Ethiopian meat and livestock market.

The first phase of the project will see the employment of some 600 permanent staff.

On the issue of environmental protection, Khan said a world-class effluent treatment plant would be constructed alongside the meat processing project.

In the second phase, the company plans to more than double its slaughtering and exporting, depending on the market demand.

The government has provided 75ha of land and the company intends to begin commercial production by September. Khan said the waste from the slaughterhouse will be processed to produce biogas and animal feed.

The design of the plant has been finalised and the company is in the process of evaluating a contractor, according to Eshetu Temesge, executive director of ETG.

“It is not just about signing a contract but also importing good practices from Allana”, he said.

The Allan Group, known as Allana Sons in India, exports frozen halal buffalo meat, coffee, fruits and other commodities from India to some 70 countries. It was established in 1865 and has come to Ethiopia with its own capital and market knowhow.

Khan said that his company would continue investing in Ethiopia to make it the “hub of meat in east Africa”.

“This particular project will open our eyes to use the resources we have yet fail to pay attention of their potential,” said Keba Hunde, commissioner of Oromiya Investment Commission.

(Hadra Ahmed can be reached at hadraahmed@gmail.com)

IANS