LISTED firm National Foods has invested US$6,5 million through PHI Commodities for contract farming for the 2015-2016 agricultural season.
The company expects to spend US$15 million to buy the produce.
The investment was mainly used to fund production of 7 800 hectares of maize, wheat and soya beans.
It is forecast that the company will take in more than 40 000 tonnes of maize, wheat and soya beans from local contracted farmers.
National Foods MD Mr Michael Lashbrook said, “As a country we are far too reliant on the importation of raw materials such as maize, wheat and soya meal. Our company will provide support wherever possible to encourage and promote production of these commodities.”
Outside of contract farming, National Foods has this year completed the acquisition of Breathaway Food Caterers, which produces the popular Iris biscuits and Zapnax, Wingz and Kurls snack brands.
The company has also bought a 40 percent stake in Pure Oils Industries, one of the country’s largest cooking oil producers.
“We are looking forward to growing both of these businesses in the year ahead,” added Mr Lashbrook.
National Foods joins a growing list of local companies that have entered contract farming as a way to guarantee access to key raw materials.