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Delta blames forex shortages

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Beverages manufacturer Delta says foreign currency challenges coupled with hoarding of soft drinks witnessed in the past few weeks is to blame for the short supply of the commodity on the market.

The company’s corporate affairs director Mr Alex Makamure said foreign currency shortages which heightened at the beginning of the month have resulted in production bottlenecks.

“We get the concentrates to make soft drinks from Swaziland but owing to forex challenges we can’t manufacture these. Normally there is a steady supply but the hoarding caused by panic buying worsened the situation,” he said.

Most shops visited by the ZBC did not have soft drinks in stock but lovers of alcohol need not to worry about availability and pricing as alcoholic beverages produced by the local manufacturers are not affected because the raw materials are locally produced.

“You don’t need a lot of forex to make beer because barley, maize and malt are locally produced that is why there is a steady supply of alcoholic drinks,” added Mr Makamure.

The company is producing only bottled drinks and has suspended canned drinks at one of their production factories.

The beverage company requires at least $US5 million monthly to import critical ingredients for soft drinks manufacturing as well as for other services.

The RBZ is overwhelmed by requests of foreign currency for imports and the onus rests on the country to prioritise local production to supply the market.