Puratos Group has invested in production facilities in Kenya, Ivory Coast, Ethiopia and Nigeria with the goal of reducing food imports and the company’s ecological footprint while contributing to food security in Africa.

Formed as subsidiaries with local partners, these joint ventures will allow Puratos to support the growing African food industry.

“We are excited about opening new subsidiaries in Africa,” said Olivier Tilkens, regional director, Africa, Puratos. “These joint ventures will enable us to meet customers’ growing demands for high-quality products. We are proud to deepen our presence across the continent and to continue to invest in existing collaborations that have been so welcoming to us for more than two decades.”

Activities for Puratos Kenya began Jan. 1, 2020 and will cover the Kenyan, Tanzanian and Ugandan markets, taking over activities from Papyrus, Puratos’ previous distributor. In order to capture growth opportunities in East Africa, other investments will follow, including a production facility for local manufacturing of patisserie and bakery ingredients in Kenya.

Puratos Nigeria will begin activities in July 2020. It is the result of a joint venture between Puratos and the Adegunwa family, which is active in various food manufacturing and distribution activities in Nigeria. The facility will ease the penetration of Puratos’ bakery, patisserie and chocolate in the largest African market. Puratos Nigeria will also invest in an innovation center to train customers and develop innovative products.

Beginning operation on April 1, 2020, Puratos Ivory Coast is a joint venture in partnership with the shareholders of Sabimex, which has been Puratos’ distributor in the country for more than six years. It will locally produce patisserie and bakery powders. Puratos will also invest in a chocolate production facility.

Puratos officially incorporated Puratos Ethiopia on Dec. 9, 2019. It covers Ethiopia, Djibouti, Somalia and Eritrea. Puratos Ethiopia is a joint venture with Dachi Manufacturing PLC, an Ethiopian company active in the manufacturing and distribution of bakery and patisserie ingredients.

Puratos also plans to develop applications and ingredients using local raw materials, as well as improve the livelihoods of local communities and support efforts to combat undernutrition.

“Puratos is currently taking part in a study with the University of Pretoria in South Africa to investigate the potential of indigenous African crops for African bakery and patisserie applications,” Tilkens said. “The functionality and nutritional contribution of these new ingredients will be studied, as well as the impact on sensorial sensation and the sustainable cultivation of plant resources.”