HARARE – Schweppes Zimbabwe subsidiary, Sunrise Citrus Estates, is setting up a 2700-hectare citrus plantation in Beitbridge in move that is expected to increase the company’s revenue through exports of raw fruit.
The project is expected to increase capacity utilization in Schweppes Zimbabwe as it will allow processing of juice for local and international markets while creating employment for local communities.
In a statement, Schweppes Zimbabwe said it was in the process of conducting an Environmental Impact Assessment for the project to comply with regulations and have all stakeholders involved.
“Sunrise Citrus Estates proposes to establish a citrus plantation in Beitbridge, Zimbabwe. The 2 700ha citrus plantation will create employment for local communities. The implementation of the project will enable the processing of juice for local and international markets as well as export of raw fruit.”
Schweppes Zimbabwe, a company that is partly owned by Delta Beverages, has been on an expansion drive and is increasing its foot print in the border town as well as seeking to control the supply value chain after acquiring the Beitbridge Juicing Company in a vertical integration move that gives the company control of its value chain.
Beitbridge Juicing Company supplies Schweppes Zimbabwe with 75 percent of the company’s orange juice requirements for the company’s flagship product Mazoe Orange Crush while the remainder is imported from South Africa
The establishment of the estates also seeks to augment the supply of fruits which the business used to obtain its fruit from local farmers in Beitbridge who are located within a 30km radius of the plant.