Nestle said today (14 September) that it is aiming to double the capacity of infant cereal production at its recently-opened plant in Ghana.

The site - an extension of the existing Nestlé Tema factory which sources locally-produced rice, wheat, flour and sugar from Ghanaian suppliers - was officially opened on 9 September.

Having announced an investment of CHF36.2m (US$36.1m) in 2008 for the construction of the plant, Nestle Ghana aims to double its capacity to 18,000 tonnes of infant cereal per year having earmarked future expansion.

Completed last month, the plant's capacity is currently 9,000 tonnes of Cerelac per year, having increased from its former annual 7,000 tonnes at the Nestlé Tema factory.

Etienne Benet, head of Nestle's Central & West Africa Region (CWAR), said: "As the world leader of nutrition, health and wellness, we are proud to remain the pioneer of investment in Africa. Our strong commitment to the continent has been consistent for many years and we are determined to continue in this exciting journey with the inauguration of this new infant cereal plant."

Samer Chedid, managing director for Nestlé Ghana, added: "Nestle has been a steadfast, socially responsible corporate citizen of Ghana. We've experienced fulfilling and challenging moments in this country and today, we can proudly say that the socio-economic stability experienced in the past two decades have fostered the belief that the Ghanaian economy, and its people can respond favourably to such an investment."

Nestle Ghana's 39-year-old Tema factory was opened for manufacturing in 1971 producing Ideal milk and Milo products.

The factory now also produces Chocolim, Nescafé 3 in 1, Cerelac, Carnation and Nescafé Breakfast.