Niche Cocoa Industry Ltd, Ghana’s largest fully integrated cocoa processor, has successfully installed its first-ever aseptic line through Sidel. The line marks a significant milestone for the company as it makes its first venture into milk-based products in PET with the assistance of Sidel’s long-standing expertise in aseptic production.
“We selected Sidel because of its leadership in aseptic beverage production and packaging design,” said Edmund A. Poku, Niche Cocoa Industry Ltd’s Chief Executive Officer. “Our expectations were fully satisfied. Aseptic Liquid Dairy Products (LDPs) are complex to produce, and this was a new area for us. Sidel’s technical experts and dedicated local sales and project management teams partnered with us: sharing knowledge and competencies and providing guidance every step of the way. As a result, we have successfully introduced Ghana’s first and only locally produced and aseptically bottled chocolate milk.”
Bassam Oussaifi, Sidel’s Vice President Sales, Middle East & Africa, said: “We are delighted that this project is helping our customer move a further step towards its vision of becoming Africa’s leading producer of cocoa products.”
Having chosen PET for its 100 percent recyclability, affordability, food integrity, and lightweight properties, Niche Cocoa Industry Ltd opted for Sidel’s Predis aseptic dry preform sterilisation technology. Offering optimum food safety and product quality, Aseptic Combi Predis™ has been installed in over 200 solutions worldwide. It has made Sidel a global leader in aseptic production, a position confirmed by its validation by the US FDA in 2017. Predis also reduces water usage and chemical consumption because it is known for its ease of operation. Since its launch, it has successfully decontaminated more than 120 billion bottles globally.
Both parties have worked closely together to ensure the smooth delivery of a project that required Niche Cocoa Industry Ltd to utilise Sidel’s vast experience in aseptic packaging to navigate many new challenges because it was the first of its kind in Ghana. The line operates with a 99.6 percent efficiency. It has resulted in a high level of customer satisfaction, noting Sidel’s leadership and quest for perfection throughout the process and providing a platform for the company to take its product to market.
Aseptic PET solution
The 16,000 bottles per hour aseptic PET complete solution integrates Tetra Pak Processing Systems technologies and the Sidel Aseptic Combi Predis™ with dry preform and cap sterilisation systems, two units of Gebo OptiDry®, a sleeve labeller, a VersaFilm® Access shrink-wrapping system, and finally a stretch wrapper. Sidel also supplied its market-leading EIT® (Efficiency Improvement Tool) data acquisition and plant intelligence system, widely used to support its beverage company customers in decreasing unplanned downtime, reducing waste and costs, and increasing factory output.
Fastest-growing cocoa producer
Niche Cocoa Industry Ltd, founded in 2011, manufactures high-quality, semi-finished cocoa products for export, such as cocoa liquor, cocoa butter, cocoa cake, and cocoa powder. Based in Tema, near Ghana’s capital, it is the fastest-rising local cocoa processor in the country, with an installed processing capacity of 90,000 metric tons per year. Through its consumer products arm, Niche Confectionery Ghana Ltd, the business manufactures high-quality finished products for the local and export markets. These include chocolates, chocolate spreads, powdered drinking beverages, and a ready-to-drink chocolate beverage. Ghana is the world’s second-biggest cocoa producer and provider of the highest-quality cocoa beans in bulk.
Innovation and growth in the African market
Sidel has been serving the African market for many years, working closely to help its customers in beverage, food, home, and personal care packaging achieve their business objectives. It contributes to the region’s economic development and sustainable, responsible growth through innovations such as aseptic beverage production and other advanced packaging solutions that benefit customers and makes the lowest possible environmental impact. Sidel continues to expand operations in Africa, with the opening of a new regional office in Nairobi, Kenya, to serve customers across East Africa last year.