• June 15, 2024

Investor Plans Nicotine Extraction in Zimbabwe

 Investor Plans Nicotine Extraction in Zimbabwe
Photo: Tobacco Reporter archive

A Chinese investor plans to build a multi-billion dollar nicotine-extraction factory in Zimbabwe, reports The Herald. The plans are at an advanced stage, according to the country’s former ambassador to China, Christopher Mutsvangwa.

The facility will extract nicotine from tobacco stalks, leaves and flowers for the cigarette alternatives, such as e-cigarettes. Once established the factory is expected to also process tobacco from neighboring countries including Malawi, Mozambique and Zambia.

“There is going to be a very big industry to extract nicotine from the by-products after selecting the premium tobacco leaves,” Mutsvangwa told participants in meeting of the ruling  Zanu PF’s party’s Mashonaland West provincial coordinating committee meeting in Chinhoyi.

“The Chinese firms have an interest in setting up the factories here in Zimbabwe because of our production levels,” he said.

The investor’s board of directors reportedly met on May 31, 2024, to finalize the modalities of setting up the factory, which will likely be built in Karoi, in one of Zimbabwe’s largest tobacco producing districts.

Zimbabwe is also expected to be a major producer of cannabis seeds following plans to establish a US$400 million factory. “We now have capacity to produce cannabis seed in the country. After an initial investment of $30 million, the company now wants to set up a seed production factory,” said Mutsvangwa.

The investments in nicotine extraction and cannabis production will boost Zimbabwe’s attempts to extract more value from its tobacco industry, as detailed in the government’s Tobacco Value Chain Transformation Plan.