Zimbabwe’s sole ethanol producer, Green Fuel said it has so far invested $300 million into the Chisumbanje ethanol project. Green Fuel began working on the ethanol project in 2009 and so far the plant is the biggest of its kind on the continent.
The Chisumbanje plant has the capacity to produce 120 million litres of high quality, anhydrous ethanol per annum, along with capacity to generate 18 megawatts of electricity.
Green Fuel is a joint venture between the government’s Agricultural and Rural Development Authority (Arda) and private companies, Macdom and Rating Investments owned by business tycoon Billy Rautenbach.
Green Fuel director Nicole Rautenbach said $300 million has so far been pumped into the project.
“In excess of $300 million has been invested into the ethanol project to date.
“Green Fuel has developed highly mechanised agriculture
production and we are one of the few companies in Africa utilising state of the art mechanised harvesters.
“All our local staff has been trained to operate and maintain the harvesters, ensuring the development and retention of local skills,” she said.
She said the plant produces 120 million litres of ethanol per annum.
“In order to satisfy the mandatory blending policy of 15 percent, we are currently producing up to 7 million litres of ethanol per month.
“Production has increased since this time last year and will continue to increase while we build up stocks, “she added.
She however said the company is having challenges in
raising investment to expand the plant.
“However, we are continuing to push to keep Zimbabwe at the forefront of renewable energy in Africa and globally,” she said.
The plant generates 18 Megawatts of electricity as a by-product enough to power 30 000 households. – New Ziana.