Kraft Foods opens $40m Bahrain unit
Manama, April 15, 2008
Kraft Foods today officially opened its $40 million state-of-the-art manufacturing plant at Bahrain International Investment Park (BIIP).
A high profiled audience attended the opening, including Bahrain figureheads and Kraft Foods executives from the US, Europe and Middle East and Africa, in addition to key distributors and suppliers.
The event was officiated by Dr Hassan Fakhro, Minister of Industry and Commerce, and graced by Dr Majeed Bin Mohsen Al Alawi, Minister of Labour and Social Affairs.
As one of the largest foreign food and beverage plants in the Middle East, the factory will be responsible for the production of 60,000 tonnes per year of Kraft cheese and powdered beverages for the Middle East and Africa region.
“The Bahrain facility is an important milestone in our Eastern Europe Middle East and Africa strategic plans. This region being of significant importance as an emerging market to Kraft Foods, our new state-of-the-art facility will enable us to increase our production and distribution efficiencies to cater for the growing Middle East and Africa market demands”, said Maurizio Calenti, group vice president Kraft Foods and president of Kraft Foods Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa.
“The state-of-the-art technology deployed throughout the facility enables the production of 60,000 tones of Kraft cheese and Tang products per year to cater specifically for consumer demands in this region. Each minute 100 jars of Tang, 250 jars of Cream Cheese Spread and 550 cans of Cheddar Cans Cheese pass through the production lines. The plant utilizes advanced manufacturing equipment from Germany and USA, which ensures world class quality and efficiency standards”, said Andrew Travis, Kraft Foods Bahrain plant director.
The investment also presents growth opportunities on Bahrain’s economic front. Currently operating on a 250-strong skilled labour force, and with the creation of more jobs in the near future, the new plant is expected to contribute $120 million per year into Bahrain’s economy through wages, raw and packaging material supply and shipping and distribution operations. At present 13.5 per cent of the labour force are Bahraini nationals. This figure is expected to rise to 20 per cent as the plant completes its hiring process. - TradeArabia News Service
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