Company secures deal to produce ethanol

BY: Dominic Moses Awiah

Kasapreko Company Limited (KCL), an indigenous beverage producer, has entered into a partnership deal with Caltech Ventures, owners of a 3,000-hectare cassava farm at Hodzo in the Volta Region.

Under the deal, Kasapreko Company Limited is investing US$7.5 million in the cassava plantation and that investment is aimed at increasing cassava yields for the production of ethanol in the country. By that amount, KCL has consequently acquired 40 per cent shares in Caltech Ventures.

Ghana currently imports all its annual ethanol requirements of about 60 million litres. KCL imports over 25 million litres of ethanol annually for the production of its beverages.

The project, which is expected to commence in May, 2015, will produce three million litres of alcohol a year from cassava.

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Ethanol production

At a ceremony in Ho in the Volta Region to announce the deal, the Deputy Managing Director of KCL, Mr Kojo Nunoo,  said the project would provide sufficient cassava flour to produce starch adhesive.

“The starch adhesive will feed a corrugated carton plant that Kasapreko is currently putting up in Accra. Kasapreko is in the process of acquiring a fully automated carbonated soft drink bottling plant, and carbon dioxide required for the plant will be obtained from the Caltech project.

“We currently import over 25 million litres of alcohol annually and so with this project on stream we hope to cut down our import of ethanol by 50 per cent,” he said.

According to him, the project will support the company’s import substitution strategy and confirm its position as a prime local manufacturer that uses predominantly local material in its production.

Creation of jobs

The Managing Director of Caltech Ventures, Chris Quarshie, said the project would have a strong social impact on the Hodzo community as it would provide massive employment for people living in and around Hodzo.

He also said the project would generate about 600 megawatts of power from cassava waste using a gasification technology. He said out of the power to be generated, only about 250-300eKW would be used for its own operations and the rest pushed onto the national grid.

Mr Quarshie praised Kasapreko for the initiative and urged other manufacturing companies to emulate its example to help grow local businesses.