CSC revival: More investors should emulate Bousted Beef

The Chronicle

Zimbabwe on Thursday witnessed a milestone achievement when the Cold Storage Company resumed operations under a new name CSC- Boustead Beef after 22 years of closure. The giant beef processing plant which is a game changer for the country’s livestock farming, was officially opened by Vice President, Dr Constantino Chiwenga who said the company will not be allowed to collapse again. 

The CSC was at one time the largest meat processor in Africa handling up to 150 000 tonnes of beef and associated products annually. It used to export to the European Union (EU) where it had an annual quota of 9 100 tonnes of beef. 

The revival of CSC is therefore a very welcome development not just for the residents of Bulawayo but the entire country. It is also a confirmation that Bulawayo is working to regain its status as the country’s industrial hub. The beef processing plant is being revamped under a US$400 million Joint Venture Farming Concession Agreement with Boustead Beef Zimbabwe, a United Kingdom-based investor. 

The investor has so far pumped US$24 million into the business and the target is to slaughter 1 500 beasts a day. The revival of the company means more jobs for Bulawayo residents. Dr Chiwenga said the re-opening of the beef processing plant was a confirmation that the Second Republic was increasing its focus on resuscitating agro-processing industries in line with the broader growth trajectory under the agricultural sector. 

“Today is a great day, what had been sent to the dust bins has come back and the CSC is here to stay and will never again go into the state in which we saw it for many years under our watchful eyes,” said VP Chiwenga.

Vice President Chiwenga (second from right) accompanied by Dr Anxious Masuka (left) and his Deputy Hon Davis Marupira (right) as well as the Minister of State for Bulawayo Affairs and Devolution Cde Judith Ncube (second from left) is shown around the CSC Boustead Beef Company premises by the company Engineer Munyaradzi Masiswa (third from right) during the VP’s tour and official opening of the CSC Boustead Beef processing plant in Bulawayo recently


He said the re-opening of the beef plant was evidence that the private sector is committed to stimulating growth of the livestock sector. Smallholder livestock farmers contribute about 90 percent of the country’s slaughter stock and are therefore set to benefit immensely from the resuscitation of the CSC. 

Dr Chiwenga said the smallholder livestock farmers who have been getting a raw deal from middlemen are now guaranteed a vibrant market for their livestock and should therefore ride on CSC to generate higher incomes. The economy is set to benefit immensely from the revival of CSC as it will unlock value in the livestock industry through job creation and foreign currency earnings.  

Vice-President Chiwenga (second from right) listens to CSC Boustead Beef Engineer Munyaradzi Masiswa (third from right) explaining the slaughtering procedure of cattle during the VP’s official opening of the CSC Boustead Beef processing plant at CSC yesterday. Listening on the right is the Minister of Lands, Agriculture, Water and Rural Resettlement Dr Anxious Masuka. Picture: Dennis Mudzamiri

A number of downstream industries will also be established creating more jobs. Bulawayo is strategically positioned in the region hence many industries that intended to export some of their products had established their manufacturing plants in the city. 

We want at this juncture to commend Bousted Beef Zimbabwe for having confidence in our economy and committing such huge capital to revive the CSC. The challenge to Government and local authorities is to continue working to create an enabling environment for businesses to flourish.

Article Source: The Chronicle

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