Namib Mills will soon make a foray into the bread market, with the company planning to launch a superior bread loaf towards the end of the year.
The bread type, according to the company, is expected to give it a competitive edge in a market currently dominated by supermarket bakeries. “Superior Loafs are known internationally for its benefits, e.g. longer life, softer and richer texture, nutritional values are shown on the product, etc. In Namibia we haven’t had this product as the technology is very expensive (especially due to the fact that a cooling tower is required to ensure longer bread life), we are opportunistic about the fact that Namibia has the economies of scale and consumer base to purchase these type of breads,” the company responded to a Windhoek Observer inquiry.
Although details about the planned investment, which will be set up in the Khomas region are sketchy, the project when completed is expected to create 70 permanent employees.“We are setting up the new plant between Windhoek and Okahandja, the production will only be focused on the Superior Loafs,” Namib Mills said. The company, which is known for manufacturing various food items, animal feed and poultry, is also one the biggest suppliers of flour to the Namibian market, a key component in the bread manufacturing process, having invested N$100 million in 2017 to double its wheat mill output.
The planned product offering from the company comes after the launch of the instant porridge range in 2017 following a N$15 million investment, which created 20 jobs. “Namib Mills is always looking to be more innovative on products offered to Namibian and International markets,” the company said.
Established 37 years ago, the company has emerged as one of the biggest manufacturers in the country, having invested N$70 million to quadruple its pasta-producing capacity to 4.7 tons per hour and in the process creating 50 jobs. The company also invested N$660 million towards the creation of Namib Poultry Industries, creating 650 jobs.
Last year, the company was, however, taken to court by the Namibia Competition Commission (NaCC) for allegedly abusing a dominant position in the market for the production and supply of wheat flour when it concluded loan agreements with 54 bakeries with a clause that required them to purchase their wheat flour exclusively from Namib Mills.