SBL’s Corporate Affairs Director, John Wanyancha said in a statement yesterday that the company has concluded agreements with two more agricultural colleges in Iringa and Kagera regions that will admit 20 students who will get SBL’s Kilimo-viwanda scholarships.
Wanyancha said the other two colleges, Bagamoyo based Kaole Wazazi College of Agriculture and Kilacha Agriculture and Livestock Training Centre in Kilimanjaro which have existing contracts the brewer, will resume with their admitted 20 students under the program.
The SBL Kilimoviwands Scholarship Program targets students from farming communities whose families cannot afford to pay for their studies. Currently, the program is sponsoring a total of 40 students to pursue higher education countrywide.
“We believe this program will go a long way in strengthening the existing pool of agricultural experts in the country which is necessary in helping farmers increase productivity and ultimately their incomes,” Wanyancha said.
The scholarship program is in line with the company’s objective to increase its uptake of cereals used in beer production including maize, barley and sorghum. Last year, SBL procured over 17,000 tonnes of grains from local farmers, equivalent to 70 per cent of its annual raw material requirement.
“SBL’s ambition is to increase its sourcing of local raw materials to 85 percent locally and that’s why we find it important to support the government in training specialists such as field extension officers, agronomists and others,” he added. The brewer currently source grains from a network of 400 farmers in various regions across the country.
Incorporated in 1988 as Associated Breweries, SBL is the second largest beer company in Tanzania, with its beer brands accounting for over 25% of the market by volume. SBL has three operating plants in Dar es Salaam, Mwanza and Moshi.
SBL’s brands include Serengeti Premium Lager, Serengeti Lite, Pilsner Lager, Pilsner King, Tusker Lager, Tusker Lite, Kibo Gold, Guinness stout and Senator. The company is also home to world’s renowned spirits such as Johnnie Walker Whisky, Smirnoff Vodka, Gordon’s Gin, Captain Morgan Rum and Baileys Irish Cream.