The GH¢145 million facility is part of the Beverage Company’s commitment to sourcing more local raw materials for brewing its brands and continuously investing in the country.
Mr Herbert Krapa, the Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry, commissioning the new plant, commended Guinness Ghana for the phenomenal achievement of the business over the last six decades.
“It is an example of what experience and innovation can help achieve. In a market that is highly competitive, Guinness Ghana has shown that paying attention to every little need of the consumer is a guaranteed prescription for success,” he said.
Mr Krapa said, “Guinness Ghana’s local raw material programme is highly commended by government,” and that the benefits of the monumental investment to the Ghanaian economy were vast, meaning, more jobs would be created in the manufacturing, distribution and sale of the products.
He said with the engagement of more farmers in the out-grower schemes, many more lives would be impacted positively in line with Government’s flagship Planting for Food and Jobs programme, designed to enhance the capacity of farmers and to increase production of food and other agricultural products in the short to medium term.
“Maize and sorghum is an integral part of this programme. I believe Guinness Ghana’s exemplary efforts form a strong case to pay more attention to the production of these grains, as government is committed to supporting the manufacturing sector in the area of value addition,” he added.
Helene Weesie, the Managing Director for Guinness Ghana, said the new addition to the business’ production capacity presented an opportunity for an increased demand for local raw materials since the primary raw materials for production at the new facility would be sorghum.
“Since 2003, Guinness Ghana has been using sorghum as an ingredient for the brewing of some of our brands such as Guinness Foreign Extra Stout and Malta Guinness. We have year on year made significant investments in the cultivation of sorghum and re-engineering our brands to use more local materials. This new investment will allow us to source more than 40,000 tonnes of sorghum a year,” she said.
The Managing Director said the new plant would stimulate and impact the local economy, as Guinness Ghana’s ambition was to increase usage of total raw material to 70 per cent by 2024.
She said the Company was committed to the Local Raw Materials (LRM) initiative, which continued to inject significant investment into the agricultural value chain.
“We, therefore, need all stakeholders to work together and create an enabling policy environment as this initiative has sustainable shared value for all involved, especially as it supports government’s Planting for Food and Jobs initiative,” Weesie said.
Mr James Duddridge, UK Minister for Africa, commenting on Diageo’s newest investment, said it meant more sorghum, more farmers with money in their pockets, more production, more profits, with opportunity for the business to contribute more taxes throughout the whole process.
“It is at the centre of Ghana beyond aid, which is about growth, the private sector, regional trade and attracting international partners, and Guinness does that not just in the production of their beer but impacting the supply chains beneath them and the distribution chains beyond”, the UK Minister for Africa, added.
Rev. Ammishadai Owusu Amoah, the Commissioner-General for the Ghana Revenue Authority, expressed excitement at the investment and the progress the business continued to make.
He said, “For us, our presence here signifies the collaborative nature and the support we have received from Guinness Ghana.
“Guinness Ghana has supported us a lot in the implementation of the excise tax stamp, key reforms and has also suggested other ideas to us. This is the collaborative approach we should encourage and look forward to,” Rev. Amoah said.