First Herbicide Factory to Begin Production with 27m Br Investment

Adame Tulu Pesticide Processing S.C. is to begin production at its new herbicide factory, the first in Ethiopia, by June 2015.

The factory, which cost 27 million Br for construction and machinery acqusition and installation, has been under construction in Butajira town, around 110Km from Addis Abeba on 3.4ht of land. Its operation is dependent on the Chinese company, Tianjin Bohai Chemical Industry Group Corporation, which will supply it with the chemicals and chemical processing recipe for the production of the herbicide called 2,4-D (2,4-Dichlorophenoxy acetic acid).

Adame Tulu agreed to buy the chemicals as well as machinery from this company alone in exchange for the process and will distribute the herbicide in Ethiopia with the brand name Ethio 24-D.

Tianjin has also provided Adame Tulu with the machinery, worth six million Birr. The two have signed a 10-year agreement.

Adame Tulu presently produces insecticide to prevent the spread of yellow fever at another plant it has in Ziway, obtaining the inputs it needs from the same Chinese company, which has been in the chemical industry since 1986.

The 24-D is used for weed control on various crops, including teff, sugar cane and wheat, said Simeneh Altaye, CEO of Adame Tulu Pesticide Processing S.C. The herbicide is effective in broadleaf weed control in the agricultural industry and is one of the most widely used herbicides in the world, according to Fikremariam Abebe, pesticide inspector at the Ministry of Agriculture. The product is available at a lower cost than other herbicides, at 80 Br a litre.

Adame Tulu, which has been being administered under the Privitization & Public Enterprises Service Agency (PPESA) since 1990, is the sole producer of various insecticide and fungicide chemicals in Ethiopia.

The new factory will have the capacity to produce 500,000lt of 2,4-D, reaching 1.5 million litres in two years.

Currently, in Ethiopia, around 200,000lt of 2,4-D are imported from abroad while the demand for the chemical is estimated to reach two million litres.

This is expected to increase as the quantity of land used for crop production increases, said Simeneh. In 2013/14 Meher season, the Post-harvest Crop Production Survey by the Central Statistical Agency indicated that a total land area of about 12.4 million hectares of land was covered by grain crops – cereals, pulses and oilseeds, slightly up from 12.3 million hectares the previous year.


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