Mar 09, 2012
Government-funded company considers exporting its productsBack
© Reuse this
The focus on South African clients is aimed at helping the company grow and attain financial security.
“This will also enable Phumani Paper to see where a need for its products exists in the market. “The company can then cater to and expand on those needs, which will generate more income and help to create more work opportunities for artisans,” says interim programme manager Mandy-Lee Pietersen.
“Phumani Paper aims to generate more income from sales and to be more commercially driven. “With that goal in mind, the company needs to expand into new markets,” Pietersen adds.
Growth over the last few years has been slow for the Johannesburg-based company owing to the economic downturn.
The manufacturer’s stunted growth is the result of local and international markets being dominated by cheap paper imports from Thailand, India and Japan, she states.
“Nevertheless, while we are still feeling the effects of the economic downturn, things are slowly starting to look up. “The company is constantly working on improving production and creating inno- vations,” she reports.
One of its innovations included the development of a solar-powered drying system for its ecofuel briquettes, in 2010.
The ecofuel briquette is made from waste plant and paper fibre, used water and rotting or leftover paper pulp. The briquettes can be used as an alternative source of energy for cooking and heating, and serve an environmental purpose as well.
Invasive plant species can also be con- verted into a briquette, which helps to preserve the country’s indigenous biodiversity.
The solar dryer decreases the drying time of the ecofuel briquette and helps to increase production. The first completed dryer is now ready for delivery.
A request for a solar dryer for a project being led by the Department of Agriculture has also been received, says Pietersen.
In the past two years, Phumani Paper has been focusing on supporting paper-making artisans and establishing archival paper-making units in Winterveld, in the North West, Welkom, in the Free State, Ivory Park, in Gauteng, and Bosele, in North West province.
The sites are situated in rural areas and serve as job creation enterprises.
Renovations have been completed at two of the two sites.
“With archival paper making, you need to ensure that the work area is well ventilated, clean and that no excess dust is present,” says Pietersen.
Another project the company is involved in is the design of paper mache pets. This project is being undertaken by the industrial design students at the University of Johannesburg, where the pets are designed and manufac- tured by a community-based producer group, and then taken to market.
Phumani Paper has also embarked on an engineering project to improve the mechanisms, and consequently the efficiency, of the beaters used in the paper-making process, says Pietersen.
She emphasises that the manufacturing of its products assist in creating jobs and reducing waste. “Our production process helps to inspire, educate and empower individuals, making a difference in their lives,” she adds.
Phumani Paper’s goals for the future are to become financially stable and secure, while not losing sight of its social development goals.
Edited by: Chanel de Bruyn© Reuse this Comment Guidelines (150 word limit)
Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor Online
Other Paper, Pulp and Board News
While local paper and pulp producer Sappi remains a committed partner to South Africa’s paper and board markets, the company has shifted its focus from manufacturing graphic papers to packaging papers, owing to declining local demand for graphic papers and a strong...
Recent Research Reports
Liquid Fuels 2015: A review of South Africa's liquid fuels sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Liquid Fuels 2015 Report examines these issues in the context of South Africa’s business environment; oil and gas exploration; fuel pricing; the development of the country’s biofuels industry; the logistics of transporting liquid fuels; and...
Road and Rail 2015: A review of South Africa's road and rail sectors (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Road and Rail 2015 report examines South Africa’s road and rail transport system, with particular focus on the size and state of the country’s road and rail infrastructure and network, the funding and maintenance of these respective networks, and...
Defence 2015: A review of South Africa's defence sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Coal 2015 report examines South Africa’s coal industry with regards to the business environment, the key participants in the sector, local demand, export sales and coal logistics, projects being undertaken by the large and smaller participants in the...
Real Economy Year Book 2015 (PDF Report)
There are very few beacons of hope on South Africa’s economic horizon. Economic growth is weak, unemployment is rising, electricity supply is insufficient to meet demand and/or spur growth, with poor prospects for many of the commodities mined and exported. However,...
Real Economy Insight: Automotive 2015 (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Real Economy Year Book comprises separate reports under the banner Real Economy Insight and investigates key developments in the automotive, construction, electricity, road and rail, steel, water, gold, iron-ore and platinum sectors.
Real Economy Insight: Water 2015 (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Real Economy Year Book has been divided into individual reports under the banner Real Economy Insight and investigates key developments in the automotive, construction, electricity, road and rail, steel, water, coal, gold, iron-ore and platinum sectors.
This Week's Magazine
Energy analyst and EE Publishers MD Chris Yelland warned recently against excessive optimism regarding timescales for the proposed construction of new nuclear power plants (NPPs) in South Africa. He was speaking at a Nuclear Roundtable in Johannesburg. “I think we...
Malawi’s Lilongwe Water Board (LWB) is inviting eligible bidders to prequalify for the board’s efficiency improvement works, which will be implemented as part of the E24-million Lilongwe Water Resources Efficiency Programme. LWB CEO Alfonso Chikuni explains that...
CROATIA, AN EU MEMBER BUT NOT A TDCA MEMBER On July 1, 2013, Croatia officially became the twenty-eighth member of the European Union (EU). Despite Croatia’s accession into the EU, it is yet to become party to the Trade, Development and Cooperation Agreement (TDCA)...
The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) has announced that its new Inundu airborne electronics testing, evaluation and training pod had made its first test flight on September 10. The successful flight was undertaken from Lanseria International...
The Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA) – which disbursed a record R13-billion during 2015, from R12.7-billion in the prior year – remained optimistic that it could ramp-up loan disbursements to R25-billion a year by 2018 as it sought to give greater emphasis...