Frequently Asked Questions

  • Q: What exactly will the JV produce at its food production facility in Kigali, Rwanda?

    A: AIF produces the infant cereal-based food ‘SUPER CEREAL Plus’ for the WFP. WFP will distribute SC+ among beneficiaries aged 6-24 months throughout its African operations.
A similar product was developed for the Government, who gives it to beneficiaries under the name Shisha Kibondo; on top of the infant product, Government also hands out a maternal product, targeting pregnant and breastfeeding women. Both products come under the name Shisha Kibondo.
For the commercial market in Rwanda and beyond, AIF produces its branded Nootri-range, comprising Nootri Toto, Nootri Mama and Nootri Family. These products are sold via food retailers in Rwanda and other East-African countries.

  • Q: How will you know if you have succeeded in helping malnourished people?

    A: The Government of Rwanda’s Ministry of Health carries out regular health checks on its people to track developmental progress short term.  In the long term, CHAI will work with local partners on behalf of the government on implementation studies assessing the effectiveness of the program.

  • Q: How many Rwandans are expected to benefit from the free Government of Rwanda nutritious food produced by AIF?

    A: Government officials expect that an estimated 120,000 children and mothers from vulnerable families will start consuming the free nutritious foods provided by the Government. Many more will be able to benefit from products sold via commercial outlets in Rwanda.

  • Q: Are locals likely to benefit from AIF’s investment in Rwanda?

    A: Firstly, maize and soya is sourced from over 9000 local farming cooperatives providing farmers with a stable and guaranteed income, thereby improving their and their families’ livelihoods. Secondly, the joint venture investment will create around 280 direct jobs in Rwanda. On top of this, it will stimulate broader private sector development, especially in service industries at and around the plant. Thirdly, plant employees will be given training and development opportunities contributing to their career development.

  • Q: Why is ‘1000 days’ significant in AIF’s work?

    A: AIF finds it important that all children get the opportunity to develop to their full potential. The right food gives children this potential. As a fortified food company, AIF aims to prevent stunting and achieve adequate nutrition for all.

  • Q: What is the meaning of ‘1000 days’?

    A: The first 1000 days of life represent the period from conception up to the age 24 months. It is widely proven and acknowledged that offering the right nutrition during this window is essential for a child’s healthy growth and development.

  • Q: When you say fortified foods, what does this mean?

    A: Fortified foods are foods that are enriched with essential vitamins and minerals, customized to the target group.

  • Q: Do Rwandan farmers have the capability to supply all the raw materials?

    A: Sourcing from local farmers always has been a key element of the enterprise. At this moment, Rwandan farmers can unfortunately not satisfy the need of the factory. Together with our partners we are working hard to find a solution, as our objective to source locally has not changed.

  • Q: How much cereal is needed for AIF to realize its 2018 targets?

    A: In order to reach the 2018 production targets we will need to buy approximately 28,000 tons of maize and 12,000 tons of soya.

  • Q: What is the target production in 2018?

    A: In 2018, we expect to reach a production output of at least 35,000 tons.

  • Q: What is the capacity of the AIF plant?

    A: The plant has an annual capacity of 45,000 tons.

  • Q: Has AIF already started its operations in Rwanda?

    A: The first product left the production line in December 2016 and meanwhile, more products have been produced. The plant is entirely set up and operated in line with European quality criteria and has quality systems such as GMP (good manufacturing practices) and HACCP (hazard analysis critical control point) in place. A plant of such size and quality is unique in Rwanda, East-African and beyond.

  • Q: Which other parties/stakeholders are to benefit from this venture?

    A: The WFP will purchase the majority of the production output. Meanwhile, the Government of Rwanda will also purchase a substantial volume. A smaller part of the plant’s capacity will be used to produce commercial products that will be sold via retail outlets in East Africa. The remaining production capacity will be allocated to the production of fortified blended foods for NGO’s, other Governmental programs or private labels.

  • Q: What incentives did AIF negotiate with the Government of Rwanda in this joint venture?

    A: The land, the off-take contract to supply the fortified blended foods (FBF) and tax exemptions. In addition, the Ministry of Agriculture and Animal Husbandry help AIF Rwanda to source raw materials.

  • Q: What is the cost of this venture?

    A: The investment in building the plant is around $ 45 million. If we add all working capital to that, the total investment comes close to $ 60 million.

  • Q: Which institution is representing the Government of Rwanda in this joint venture?

    A: The Government is represented by the Ministry of Agriculture, facilitating the availability of raw materials. The Ministry of Finance is supporting all monetary matters.

  • Q: What does the joint venture with the Government of Rwanda entail?

    A: GoR has played a critical role in facilitating the set-up of the joint venture in Rwanda. In the newly formed company Africa Improved Foods– registered by DSM on behalf of the JV – the Government will own a small equity share, but it will not participate in day-to-day business decisions.  Government has also guaranteed an output market for the fortified foods which is a key success factor for the venture.

  • Q: Why is AIF in Rwanda?

    A: Africa Improved Foods was created in response to an invitation from the Rwandan Government and CHAI (Clinton Health Access Initiative). The focus of the initiative is to help people - vulnerable populations (particularly pregnant and breast-feeding mothers, older infants and young children) maximize health and growth, and therefore, their future potential through improved nutrition with affordable, high quality, locally sourced foods.

  • Q: Who is AIF?

    A: AIF is a joint venture between the Dutch Multinational DSM (the largest producer of vitamins globally), the International Finance Corporation (IFC is part of the World Bank), FMO, (the Dutch development bank), CDC, (the Development Finance Institution of the UK Government’s Department for International Development) and the Government of Rwanda. The objective of this joint venture is to create a sustainable solution to fight malnutrition in Rwanda.