• Tue. Apr 23rd, 2024

Hippo invests more than ZWL$29mln in mills and packing stations

ByEconomic Times

Oct 7, 2022

By ETimes

Hippo Valley Estates, one of the country’s largest sugarcane producers, says it has invested over ZWL$29 million to improve the operational efficiencies of its machines.

As the local economy recovers from the effects of Covid-19, there is still a high demand for sugar.

“More than ZWL$29 million has been invested at Hippo Valley mills and packing stations in annual infrastructure and equipment improvement projects to uplift the existing operating facilities,” Hippo Valley said in its annual report for the period ending March 31, 2022.

“Notable achievements include the installation of epoxy floors, factory enclosure of the SunSweet sugar bagging station upgrades at the mill and phased road paving at the packing stations and ground refurbishments to suppress dust pollution during transportation of sugar.”

The company has made significant progress toward obtaining FSSC 22000 certification for its primary SunSweet brown sugar production plant.

“So far, the system has been fully documented and verified through internal audits.”

Hippo reported results for FY22 that were acceptable but fell short of our projections. Due to aphid infestations and waterlogging of the soils, the company’s cane supplies were 14% lower than they were at the same period the previous year.

Private farmer’s cane supplies increased 30% year over year. Due to the disruption caused by the constant rain in December 2020–21, 555 hectares will now be harvested in the fiscal year FY22.

Production of sugar by the company climbed by a negligible 3% year over year, from 204k tons in FY21 to 209k tons in FY22. The company’s percentage of the entire industry’s sales volume increased from 50% to 53%.

Revenue that has been adjusted for inflation climbed by 4% to ZWL30,1 billion. Additionally, operational profit and profit for the period increased by 29% and 38%, respectively, to ZWL6,3 billion and ZWL4,1 billion.

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Given the favorable outlook for the 2022–2023 rainfall season, advisory group IH Securities said the industry will obtain its entire water allotment for the season, which might increase production levels.

“Of concern is the risk of uneven rainfall that may yet again lead to water logging. In the medium to long term, additional cane is expected from private farmers as the Kilimanjaro and Pezulu projects are developed,” stated IH.

The sugar sector is working with the government to maintain a level playing field in the battle against cheap imports of sugar coming from excess producers who are protected from duty in their home nations – Harare

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