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Fruit processing

1.      Product Description: Processing and canning is used to preserve perishable foods, such as fruits, vegetables, fish, meat and some dairy products, such as butter. Processing and canning method creates products that are convenient for consumers. They are ready to eat or require minimal preparation and cooking. Processed and canned fruits, such as Orange, Pine apple, Papaya, etc. are reserved for a long time and can be consumed domestically, and can also be exported to earn foreign exchange.


2.      Rationale: With the variety of altitudes and agro-climates, the long growing seasons and accessible irrigation sources in Ethiopia, fruits, vegetables and other crops can be grown in many parts of the country. Nevertheless, fruit and vegetable processing in the country is very limited. The existing agro-processing factories are very few. One of the known agro industries is the Upper Awash Agro-Industry Enterprise which is currently processing and conning Orange Marmalade. Although there are some other firms that are exporting various fruit and vegetable products to some countries, such as Germany, Italy and the Netherlands, the participation of the private investors has been low in the pat. Given the existing potential for cultivating fruits, the processing and canning of the fruits is still inadequate and irregular.


However, because of the new Investment Code, which has created a conducive environment for agro-investment, the cheap labour force in the country and the availability of transport services, including air transport, nowadays investment in the agro-processing and canning of fruits is encouraging in Ethiopia. Hence, it is encouraging for the private investors to participate in the fruit processing and canning activity in the Region.


3.      Market Potential: Factories processing and canning fruits are very few in the country and there are non in the Amhara Region. Hence, there will be a wide range of market for the product. Possible users of the product many include groceries, supermarkets, and big hotels in the Region, tourists, and individuals. There may be also the possibility of exporting the product.

4.      Sources of Raw Materials:- The main raw materials for the processing and canning plant are fruits such as orange, Pine apple, Mango, Papaya etc. Most of these fruits can be available in many parts of the Region.


5.      Production Process and Technology:-In most case food processing may involve a complex set of techniques and ingredients to prepare ready to eat convenient foods. However, fruits require minimal processing techniques. They are simply picked and stored before being sent to market. Hence, fruit processing will involve picking, storing and washing before it is sent to market or to the canning process.


Like other perishable foods, canning preserves the fruit by heating it in airtight vacuum-sealed containers. The can is filled in a cooker, called retort and cooled to prevent overcooking of the fruit inside. This process removes oxygen. It also removes enzymes involved in fruit spoiling, and kills micro-organisms that may be present in the fruit.


6.      Estimated Investment Cost: The plant will need a sufficient space to operate. Thus, the setting of the plant will require an approximate area of 500m2, the estimated cost of which will be about Birr 2,000,000. The estimated cost of machinery and plant may be Birr 2,000,000. The total estimated investment cost, therefore, will be about Birr 4,000,000.


7.      Benefits: One of the benefits of the new investment is the utilization of the resource with new skill and technology. It will create employment opportunity for the people in the Region. It will generate earnings for the investors in the form of profit, and will generate revenue for the regional State in the form of income tax. It will encourage horticulture producers in the Region. There will be also a possibility of exporting the product to earn foreign currency.


8.      Location:- Possible locations for the plant will be Bahir Dar, Gondar, Dessie