Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo and Minister of Business, Dominic Gaskin, yesterday conducted a tour of the Demerara Distiller Limited (DDL), Manufacturing Facility, Diamond Plantation Branch.
The company, makers of the world-renowned, award-winning El Dorado rums and which the franchise on Pepsi, announced a programme of development that would see it investing $10B (US$50M) over the next three years.
During the tour, Chairman of DDL, Komal Samaroo, and other staff members explained the processes for a number of their products, according to a Government release.
The Prime Minister and Minister Gaskin also visited the juice facility and the rum plant, where they were briefed on the procurement of fruits from local farmers for DDL’s production.
While there, the government officials spoke with two farmers who were there to sell their cherries to the company. The Prime Minister remarked, “Today we see that DDL is willing and ready to receive fruits from local Guyanese farmers because the juices that they produce, by whatever name they have them, are local juices and these are the juices that we want our families and our kids to use.”
He noted that as Guyana continues to develop, local content is very crucial to production in the country. “Local juices, biscuits, sweets drinks of all types”.
Following the tour of the facility, the Prime Minister said, “Those who say that the sugar industry is dead or will be dead, they should take a tour of DDL bond and production factories.
There is an abundant need for molasses. (There is also) an unending need for liquor, rum, and vodka. So, I don’t see today the death of the sugar industry, Guyana will continue to produce sugar once there is a need for molasses.”
Chairman of DDL, Komal Samaroo, announced that the company is about to embark on significant investments in Guyana over the next three years. Through these, the company will be looking to increase its export earnings and diversify its income base not only in alcohol but other products such as non-alcoholic beverages.
Samaroo also disclosed that the investment programme will earn the company approximately $10B. One of the projects due for implementation is a new blending department. However, there are several others at various stages of planning.
Additionally, Minister of Business, Dominic Gaskin observed that the beverage company is one of the largest value-added producers in the country, and the administration remains committed to the production of value-added products such as the Indigenous and Agricultural Products.
“We the government stands ready to give support wherever possible to the company and to value-added industries on a whole,” Minister Gaskin said.
Samaroo said that the investments over the next three years “are in pursuance of DDL’s strategic goals to increase its export earnings [and], to diversify its income base; not only in alcohol but other things like food processing and other non-alcoholic beverages.”
The new DDL expansion programme includes some projects that have already started, some projects that are ready to go, and some projects that are in various stages of the planning process.
Projects that have already started include the new warehouse for storing aging rums. Projects that are ready to go include the new blending department and the new DSL warehouse.
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