The investment is designed to cut down on barley imports

The investment is designed to cut down on barley imports

South African Breweries (SAB) has revealed plans to build a new ZAR700m (US$78.9m) maltings plant in its domestic market, allowing it to cut down on barley imports.

Work on the plant, which will be located in Guateng, south of Johannesburg, will start this year and is due to finish by 2015, the SABMiller subsidiary announced on Monday (25 February). It will produce around 130,000 tonnes of malted barley annually, the company said.

“The new maltings plant will have significant cost saving and growth benefits for SAB,” said  MD Mauricio Leyva. “It will allow us to reduce our exposure to volatile international markets and replace a significant share of our imported malt and barley with local barley.”

SAB currently sources around 65% of its barley locally. Once the new maltings plant is operating, this should rise to between 90% and 95%, the company said. 

Levya added: “We will also strive to ensure we maximise local industry involvement in the construction of the new plant in order to help develop the communities in which we operate.”

Last week, SABMiller's outgoing CEO Graham Mackay talked up the brewer's local approach in global markets at the Consumer Analyst Group of New York's annual conference in Florida.
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