SOUTH African Breweries (SAB), a subsidiary of SAB InBev, has invested R240 million in the company’s Prospecton plant to increase capacity and capability for new brands.
Changing consumer trends like the rising popularity of flavoured alcoholic beverages, are driving expansion at the brewery.
SAB Prospecton plant manager, Raidah Vaid said that the investment includes a brewhouse upgrade for the processing of maize to make the base beer for flavoured alcoholic beverages.
She adds that new centrifuge technology has been deployed to better remove yeast. Advanced blending technologies blend flavours into new products which, although already in use in the US, is a first for Africa. A filtration upgrade has enabled the plant to increase throughput volumes.
eThekwini Mayor, Mxolisi Kaunda, met with SAB management on a visit to the Prospecton plant on October 19, where he expressed his pleasure that SAB continues to expand its investment in the City.
He also thanked the management of SAB saying that despite the calamities eThekwini has faced in the past three years, it has decided to retain and expand its operations in the City. Kaunda said some of the setbacks experienced in the City were Covid-19, the July 2021 civil unrest, and the recent floods.
Regional director of SAB Nkanyiso Mncwabe said during the 2023 South Africa Investment Conference, the company pledged to invest R 5.8 billion. He said of that amount, R240 million has been spent on the expansion of the Prospecton plant.
“In KwaZulu-Natal, SAB directly employs 572 workers of which the Prospecton facility accounts for 50 percent of total employment in the province. In 2019, SAB contributed R9.2 billion to the country’s gross domestic product (GDP), which is equal to 1.1 percent of KwaZulu-Natal’s GDP. We invest over R20 million in socio-economic development annually.
We are also glad that during the floods and civil unrest, we were able to retain jobs. We attribute that to the support we received from the Municipality,” said Mncwabe.