Peter Matambanadzo Senior Reporter
The First Family’s dairy project, Alpha Omega Dairy (Pvt) Limited, is set to double its production capacity from 22 000 litres of milk per day to 55 000 litres after the acquisition of a state-of-the-art milking plant and packing equipment for the Mazowe farm.
Addressing women from liberation movements from the Sadc region during a tour of the plant yesterday, Alpha Omega group general manager Mr Stanley Nhari said this was part of the company’s expansion drive.
The women were in Zimbabwe to attend the 6th Zanu-PF Women’s League conference which was officially closed by President Mugabe in Harare yesterday.
“By end of this month, we expect to double our milk production,” said Mr Nhari.
“Currently, we are milking 64 cows in less than 10 minutes and we have acquired equipment which can milk 2 500 animals in less than an hour.”
Mr Nhari said the dairy company, a subsidiary of Gushungo Holdings, also acquired state-of-the-art ice cream-making equipment which would be used to make ice cream and chocolates.
“We acquired a UHT processing plant and packing equipment and an ice cream plant,” he said.
“We have imported these from various European countries and the equipment is currently at the Durban port.”
Although Mr Nhari could not give the cost of the equipment for strategic reasons, he said the UHT plant would be used to produce pasturised milk, while the ice cream plant would be used to manufacture sandwich ice cream, the first of its kind in the region.
Mr Nhari said Alpha Omega was also breeding its herd of cattle.
The women also toured the Amai Grace Mugabe Children’s Home and school in Mazowe.
In an interview after the tour, Malawi Congress Party publicity secretary Dr Jessie Kabwila, who spoke on behalf of the group, commended Amai Mugabe for being selfless and for her dedication to caring for the less-privileged.
“I am very impressed by what I have seen here,” she said.
“But what I have liked mostly is not just the conceptualisation of trying to help those who are not privileged, but the fact that it is built around education.
“It is built around a home.
“What I have seen are children for whom somebody is making the effort to feel at home and that they have not been forgotten,” she said.
Dr Kabwila praised Amai Mugabe for establishing the children’s home.
“This concept should be marketed continent-wide and worldwide,” she said.
The other women on the tour were from Namibia’s South West Africa People’s Organisation, Tanzania’s Chama Cha Mapinduzi, Zambia’s United National Independent Party, Botswana’s Democratic Party and MPLA of Angola.