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Bokomo looks to cut maize imports

PAULINE DIKUELO
Import substitution: Bokomo says wantsto trim imports but maize isn in short supply locally
Bokomo Botswana has urged local farmers to produce more maize as the company looks to cut on its raw material importation while also empowering locals.

Speaking during a media tour this week, Bokomo chief executive officer, Werner De Beer said currently they import most of their raw materials.

“We import most of the maize, wheat as well as sugar that we use and only buy small amounts from the Botswana Agricultural Marketing Board (BAMB) and some individuals,” he said.

Currently, Bokomo imports maize and sugar from South Africa while they get wheat from Slovakia.  According to De Beer, they then process maize and wheat at their plant while they only package the sugar.

The company currently produces 252 tonnes of maize meal per day in which 30% is chaff as well as 104 tonnes of wheat per day of which 20% is bran.

The company has a plant, which comprises conditioning tanks and silos for storage in which two are maize silos of 1,600 tonnes and 2,000 tonnes respectively and four wheat silos with a combined capacity of 4,900 tonnes.

The group currently employs about 400 people, which is

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200 less than what they used to have before selling the poultry business.

“We used to have 650 employees, but after selling the poultry business we were left with close to 400 employees. We also outsource our logistics and most of them are locals,” he said.

Bokomo operations manager, Jaco Venter said they intend to maintain their quality products noting that safety is vital in their operations.

“We strive to always maintain high levels of safety in our operations. Our staff works synchronically with the machines that help us produce some of the core staple foods of our nation. We have processes that ensure we give our customers the very best as well as meet government’s set requirements,” he said.

Bokomo Botswana produces White Star Super Maize Meal, Bokomo Special Maize Meal, samp, maize rice and wheat bran offal’s sold livestock retailers. In addition, the company produces refined brown and white sugar and packages a wide array of products nationwide.



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