Egypt plans world's largest food storage system project

Posted on 17th December 2014

Egypt has collaborated with US-based Blumberg Grain, a leading global food security company, in a move to develop one of the world's largest integrated food security systems for grain storage.

Beginning of wheat harvest in Germany

The first phase of the new food security project covers 93 sites across Egypt, and enables primary processing of 3.7 million tonnes of wheat per year across a platform of 3.6 million square feet of storage space, according to Trade Arabia news.

Egypt is the largest purchaser of wheat in the world. The system will support the Ministry of Supply in recovering crops lost to post harvest losses, saving Egypt up to an estimated US$ 200 million annually.

Philip Blumberg, chairman and CEO, said: "We admire President Sisi's courage to enact difficult measures to stabilise the nation's fiscal policy and invest in infrastructure such as food security, which will contribute to GDP (gross domestic product), stabilise food prices, and reduce the need for foreign purchases of wheat."

David Blumberg, CEO of Blumberg Grain - Africa, said: "This begins the implementation of the government's vision for Egypt to become the food security centre of the Middle East. The project will transform the current barn storage infrastructure into a network of sophisticated warehouses with Blumberg Grain screening, drying and grading technologies, as well as our access and inventory management systems that will develop the platform for a commodities exchange in Egypt."

Blumberg Grain has also announced that it intends to build a manufacturing plant and export hub to produce food security technology and systems including equipment and storage buildings for the Middle East and North Africa (Mena) region, and has several proposals from Mena nations, including Egypt, for its hub.

"Though the ongoing competition for our Mena manufacturing plant and hub has not concluded, this contract places Egypt in a good position to gain the manufacturing plant and a large portion of Blumberg Grain's Mena region investment programme target of up to $250 million in processing and packaging facilities as well as high-yield farming,” explained Philip Blumberg.

"Though it's been a challenge previously to execute investment programmes in Egypt, under President Sisi we are seeing a positive change in the attitude in government and the speed in implementing infrastructure projects to improve the Egyptian economy and create jobs. We hope to be one of the first major manufacturing investors in Egypt since the change in government,” he concluded.

Christian Rath, the company's head of Applied Engineering, said: "Blumberg Grain's Mena manufacturing plant will be one of the largest of its kind, with a production capacity of 1,200 food storage buildings annually and the capability to manufacture food security equipment, both for the Egyptian market and for export of 'Made in Egypt' food storage systems throughout the Middle East."

The Mena manufacturing plant will create 1,000 new jobs, as well as an economic impact estimated by KPMG at $1 billion in the first year, and $7 billion over five years. Furthermore, the plant will increase exports and utilise local content in the manufacturing process.

The Mena manufacturing plant will also include an agricultural institute to train farmers in techniques to raise crop yields and better secure and protect the quantity and quality of the harvest.

Selection of the country-location and ground breaking for the manufacturing plant is planned for early next year, a statement said.

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