Without the secondary industry, primary farming is pointless. The raw materials have to be turned into something that the consumer can use, whether it may be cigarettes from tobacco, wool and cotton into clothing, hops into beer, or carcasses into neat meat cuts, we need our processors.
Buhler is a Swiss company with a worldwide footprint in the manufacturing of processing equipment for a variety of industries. They focus on the distribution of food processing equipment in Zambia. Anything from grain handling, milling, feed mixing, extrusion, cleaning, to drying and roasting is their forte. “Farmers in Zambia especially have problems with the moisture content and the ensuing limited harvest window for soy beans, which often need to be dried to ensure an A grading,” Peet Oosthuizen, Manager of Buhler Zambia, says.
“We prefer not to only sell a machine. We would rather offer solutions and can take control of turnkey projects. After giving our civil specs to the construction company, we will supply, install and commission a plant. A client can pick and choose from our various machines on our user friendly website and print out his own quotation before submitting it to our sales consultants,” Peet says.
As proof of their successes, Buhler can show three milling plants, which are still running perfectly after more than 24 years, in Zambia. In order to assist clients quicker and better, Buhler started to stock parts in Lusaka. “The money a miller loses during down time is much more than the cost of any part he needs. Therefore, we want to assist the client quicker and better. He can walk into our office to buy parts, or receive it within 48 hours. Last year we invoiced K8 million locally, which excludes the parts ordered from Johannesburg,” he says.
Buhler recently opened a service station for after sales support in Lusaka, and the milling industry is very pleased with this. “The big challenge for millers is that they have to export their rollers due for refurbishment. If they are not returned within a certain time, there are border tax issues involved. Currently, we have a day shift from early until late and during the weekends to refurbish all the rollers in Zambia. We complete between 60 and 70 rollers a month. That is not only Buhler rollers, we do all the other brands as well. We adapted our machines to accommodate all the different roller sizes,” Peet says.
Buhler choose to walk the long road with their clients. Somewhere in the world there is a Buhler technical specialist on the line 24 hours a day, where a client can ask for assistance, whether it is a software or hardware problem.
An exciting new project on the horizon is for the coffee industry. ”We are currently negotiating with a potential client who wants a colour sorter to spot and blow out the coloured beans,” says Peet.
Buhler can help you streamline your plant. Contact Peet Oosthuizen at +26-097-139-7212 or +27-82-498-9921, send and e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit their state-of-the-art website at www.buhlergroup.com.
Feature photo: Buhler chose to display a grain screener/cleaner with a few of their smaller machines which are very popular in Zambia on their stand at Agritech. “The people have to touch and feel them to understand how they work,” says Peet Oosthuizen, Manager, Buhler Zambia. Saghi Mohamadi, Anthony Mutwiri and Peet were the Buhler stand crew.