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Castel Malawi hard hit by forex scarcity

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Economic challenges rocking Malawi continue to haunt alcoholic beverages manufacturer Castel Malawi, which has since increased the price of its flagship spirit, Premier Brandy.

On Saturday, the company announced that Premier Brandy imbibers will now part ways with K12,000 to purchase a 750 ml bottle of the product, up from K10,000.

This is the second price hike this year as, in September, the company increased prices of all its alcoholic products, with the brandy reaching K10,000 from around K7,000.

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According to a statement the company released, the price adjustment is attributed to rising costs of production, distribution, utilities and importation of essential ingredients.

The alcoholic beverages manufacturer said these have been compounded by a tough economic environment to conduct business.

“Despite all our efforts to maintain the current price, the company is compelled to take this price decision to maintain and sustain production and supply of the products on the market,” the statement reads.

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The development comes as the market is facing shortage of the company’s products especially spirits such as Malawi Gin, Premier Brandy and Malawi Vodka, among others.

The shortage, which continues to push prices up, is attributed to difficulties in the importation of packaging materials and essential ingredients.

Newly appointed Castel Malawi Managing Director Thomas Reynaud said in a recent interview that he understands the problems that the economy is facing but his goal will be to double production.

“I know that we currently have economic problems such as the foreign exchange scarcity but we will improve the local content of our business and grow it further,” he said.

Castel Malawi holds the biggest market share of alcoholic beverages in Malawi and is the only company which manufactures beers locally.

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