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Delta hikes beer prices in Zimbabwe

By Kudakwashe Mhundwa

Beverages giant, Delta Corporation, yesterday announced new recommended wholesale and retail prices for its clear beer products that are sold across the country, a move that has resulted in a 25 percent increase of the firm’s lager beer prices.

The move by Delta follows an announcement by the company to sell its products in hard currency citing that its business was being “adversely affected” by foreign currency shortages, which resulted in the company failing to meet demand obligations.

The decision was, however, rescinded last week after the firm was engaged in talks with Government.

Following the meeting with Delta executives, which also involved Vice President Constantino Chiwenga and RBZ Governor Dr John Mangudya, Finance and Economic Development Minister Professor Mthuli Ncube who appealed to private firms to be patient while Government worked on fiscal consolidation.

“We are saying the private sector should wait for us to give policy. They should be patient and see how our fiscal policy is making progress. We are making good progress in fiscal consolidation and once we are ready, we will institute the requisite monetary reforms,” said Minister Ncube.

“They should not rush ahead to choose the currency they think the whole country should adopt. They should just be patient, let us work together. That is really our message,” he said.

Announcing the new prices, Delta corporate affairs executive Patricia Murambinda, said the latest increase is meant to cushion the beverages giant in the face of increasing local costs.

“Delta Beverages has increased the wholesale prices of clear beer by an average of 25 percent. The recommended retail prices have been adjusted accordingly.

“The adjustment of the wholesale price is meant to cushion the company against the significant increases in local costs, as confirmed by the official inflation statistics. It also addresses the value share with the retail partners. The company is still assessing the cost impact on its other products.

“The company notes the reports about hikes in the retail prices of its products. These prices do not reflect the cost of acquiring the beverages from Delta.”

Some bottle stores have been selling 375ml of castle lager beer upwards of $2 and upwards of $4 for green bottle lagers such as Golden Pilsener.

“We commend the modern trade channel that continues to charge recommended prices. We urge our retail partners to be considerate in dealing with the consumer,” said Ms Murambinda.

According to a statement released yesterday, the beverages giant said prices would be implemented with effect from 7 (yesterday) January 2019.

As such, the recommended retail price inclusive of value added tax (VAT) for lagers particularly Castle Lager, Lion, Carling Black Label (375ml and 750ml) are $1 and $2 respectively, while Bohlingers, Golden Pilsener and Zambezi (340ml and 660mln) are $1,25 and $2,50.

Eagle Lager (375ml and 750ml) $0.75 and $1,50, Castle Lite (330ml can and 340ml NRB) $1,50 and Kogs- Castle lager, lion, Carling Black Label (30 L) $90,00 Kogs- Zambezi, Golden Pilsner (30 L) $180 and Kogs- Eagle (30) $45,00.

Bulk prices for cases with VAT stand at castle Lager, Lion, and Carling Black Label 375 ml (24 units per case) $19,60 , Castle Lager, Lion, and Carling Black Label 750ml (12 units per case) 19,60 , Bohlingers, Golden Pilsener and Zambezi 340ml (24 units per case) $24,00, Bohlingers, Golden Pilsener and Zambezi 660ml (12 units per case) $24.00, Eagle Lager 375 ml (24 units per case) $14.70, Eagle Lager 750 ml (12 units per case) $14.70 and Castle Lite 330ml can (24 units per case) $30.00 respectively.

Lager beer prices were previously pegged at 80c for 375ml returnable bottles; 750ml returnable ($1,50); and 340ml returnable ($1). The Chronicle

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