Accra Brewery Limited (ABL), a subsidiary of SABMiller plc, commissioned its commercial Chibuku plant today at its brewery site in Accra.
The plant, which was commissioned by His Excellency John Dramani Mahama, Vice President of the Republic of Ghana, has an annual capacity of 100,000 Hl and was installed at a cost of USD 2.5million.
In December 2009, Accra Brewery launched Chibuku Shake Shake, an opaque beer product that takes its cues from opaque beers that have a strong traditional heritage throughout Africa, such as pito in Ghana. At that time, the launch was done on a small scale to test consumer responses ahead of a planned full-scale production.
Chibuku is the result of a long process of development, focusing on Accra Brewery’s commitment to use only locally grown ingredients for its primary inputs and to support local wealth creation. The product is therefore brewed from maize and sorghum grown right here in Ghana.
In his speech at the commissioning, His Excellency John Dramani Mahama stated, “The commissioning of this plant is an important milestone because it is the first time in the history of our nation that a product similar to our traditional brews is being packaged on such a large commercial scale. I must commend Accra Brewery and its parent company SABMiller for bringing such an initiative to Ghana.” He further went on to add, “Accra Brewery has grown from strength to strength and must be applauded for continually being innovative, even after 80-plus years of existence.”
The event, which was attended by the Managing Director of SABMiller Africa, Mark Bowman, Deputy Minister in charge of Crops at the Ministry of Food and Agriculture, Hon. Yaw Effah-Baasi, and Deputy Greater Accra Regional Minister, Hon. Nii Djama Vanderpuye, marks an important milestone, not only in the company’s history, but also in the nation’s economic growth path.
The newly commissioned plant has the capacity to process over 200 metric tonnes of sorghum and over 300 metric tonnes of maize per annum. A minimum of 550 farmers will be supplying these locally grown raw materials. The livelihood of 550 families will therefore be impacted by this one plant alone. According to a study undertaken by Prof Ethan Kapstein of the INSEAD Business School (in France) on the socio-economic footprint of ABL, together with its sister company, Voltic Ghana Ltd in 2011, both companies support almost 18,000 jobs in the Ghanaian economy. That was before the addition of this 100,000 Hl commercial plant to the existing brewery and bottling facilities. With the addition of this Chibuku plant, ABL should be supporting about 20,000 jobs in the Ghanaian economy.
Accra Brewery Limited, which was established in 1931, started off with one brewery and two bottling lines producing Club Beer and Club Minerals, and has seen tremendous growth over the years. With the addition of Chibuku Shake Shake, Accra Brewery now produces 15 brands on the market.
Also present at the event was the Adabraka Atukpai Mantse, Nii Tetteh Adjaben I, among a host of other dignitaries. Guests at the event were treated to a range of traditional music and dances from Adehyeman Cultural Troupe as they savoured refreshments made from a variety of Ghanaian recipes in the true Chibuku spirit of authentic African tradition.