Zimbabwe News and Internet Radio

Farmers evicted to make way for Mugabe factory

MAZOWE- The First Family is building a factory in Mazowe to process milk from its Gushungo Dairy Estates, The Zimbabwean learnt this week.

Grace Mugabe with King Mswati's wife touring Gushungo Dairy Estate
Grace Mugabe with King Mswati's wife touring Gushungo Dairy Estate

Authoritative sources said the proposed dairy processing venture, to be called Alpha Dairy, has been on the cards since the 2009 debacle when Swiss food giant, Nestle, suspended milk purchases under pressure from international human rights groups.

“The state-of-the-art plant is the real reason why more than 80 newly resettled farmers were forcibly removed from farms in the Mazowe area last month,” a source said this week. The official explanation for the evictions was the affected farmers were destroying the environment by engaging in gold panning activities.

The sources said equipment for the dairy had already been imported from South Africa at an estimated cost of about $15 million. When completed, the plant is expected to manufacture dairy products such as milk, cheese, ice cream and yoghurt.

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Nestle bowed to international pressure in October 2009 after a global consumer boycott. Problems for the Grace Mugabe-run Gushungo were compounded by the failure by former parastatal, Dairibord Zimbabwe Limited, to satisfy demand for dairy products due to cashflow problems. The Zimbabwean