Mashonaland Tobacco Company (MTC) has invested $6 million in a new warehouse, following the inferno that gutted the old one in 2015.
BY FIDELITY MHLANGA
The tobacco processor and exporter’s warehouse caught fire in 2015 destroying inventory estimated at $15m.
MTC managing director Kenneth Langley told NewsDay that the warehouse that was destroyed by fire was very old and the company had found it prudent to construct a completely new structure.
“The warehouse which was burnt down was very old and was not user friendly, it’s one big warehouse with a bigger capacity than the old one in terms of the floor area. We invested $6 million on the new one,” he said.
Langley said the company has invested more in advanced fire protection to militate against an inferno in the future.
“Going forward we have put much better fire protection,” he said.
MTC, which employs over 1 000 workers, is owned by American leaf merchant, Alliance One International.
MTC is among the biggest contract players in Zimbabwe’s tobacco industry. In the 2013/14 agriculture season it purchased $79,9m worth of tobacco from contracted grower.
According to statistics from Tobacco Industry Marketing Board, the company bought 26,7m kg of the golden leaf valued at $73m as of October last year.
This season, the company will commence buying of the golden leaf in Karoi and Mvurwi as part of the decentralisation of tobacco trading.