Dakahlia for Agricultural Development Company aims to invest EGP 90m in the coming year to establish a packaging terminal, next to the station set to open by the beginning of 2018 at a cost of EGP 70m, boosting the total investments of the company to EGP 160m.
Exports director Hossam Abdel Baki said that the first station is dedicated for the packaging of grapes, which lies on four feddans in Minya. This station has a capacity of 200 tonnes per day, while the second station will be dedicated for citrus packaging on an area of 8 to 10 feddans and expected to have a capacity of 500 tonnes per day.
He noted that the company exports fruits, including grapes, citrus fruits, and pomegranate, alongside potatoes, onions, dates, and raisins. Those products are exported to over 30 countries, including Russia, Europe, and the Arab Gulf countries, adding that the company aims to yet expand in North Europe, Canada, and the Unites States in the coming year, where it has shipped a small number of shipments to these markets.
Abdel Baki said that the total exports of the company in the first half of the current year reached $20m, expected to reach $30m by the end of the year.
He pointed out that the requirements laid down by the Ministry of Agriculture aim to control the export system, as they excluded all non-qualified companies that damage the reputation of Egyptian products abroad, which has caused many problems lately.
Saudi Arabia has issued a ban on the import of Egyptian strawberries, preceded by the prohibition of entry of peppers due of the presence of pesticide residues. Peppers faced the same problem in the UAE and Kuwait, and Sudan banned entry of Egyptian agricultural and animal commodities.
He explained that 20% of the company’s production is channeled for the local market through major commercial chains, while the remainder is exported.
He highlighted the importance of international exhibitions and their role in increasing exports, stressing that the company is keen on partaking in several exhibitions, such as Food Africa, Gulfood, and World Food, thanks to allowing direct communication with clients.
Abdel Baki called on the government to improve the conditions of agriculture to encourage investment in the sector, which would contribute in promoting exports, adding that agriculture investors must find incentives to double investment and attract new investors to the sector.