AlcoNCP launches the largest maize ethanol plant in Africa 12/11/2021

On 4 November 2021, the Ambassador of Belgium, HE Didier Vanderhasselt, the Managing Director of the Belgian Chamber of Commerce for Southern Africa, Ms. Claudine Vandenabeele, the head of AWEX Johannesburg, Mr Jean-Pierre Muller, accompanied by his three colleagues Julie Tirtiaux, Marie-Eve Scoys and Rachel Ledieu had the unique opportunity to preview AlcoNCP’s brand new energy friendly plant.

Indeed AlcoNCP has proudly completed and commissioned the first large scale maize ethanol plant in Africa. 

AlcoNCP (formerly NCP Alcohols) in Durban, South Africa, is a subsidiary of the Brussels based Alco Group, one of the biggest producers and distributors of ethanol in Europe. AlcoNCP is the largest producer in Africa of high-quality fermentation alcohol for the South African and international beverage, cosmetic and pharmaceutical markets.

AlcoNCP’s tremendous expansion project was initiated 2 years ago in August 2019, when the company decided to convert its raw material from molasses to maize, build a new distillery with 55% capacity increase and optimise its energy use, named the NCP100 Project.

To conduct such an upgrade, AlcoNCP assigned the Belgian EPC company De Smet Engineers and Contractors (DSengineers) based in Mont-Saint-Guibert, Wallonia. Please check this link for the project details. Not only did DSengineers combine the latest technology, innovation, and engineering, but it also managed to complete the project ahead of schedule, despite the outbreak of the global health pandemic. A real technical and timing performance!

The AlcoNCP factory upgrade was a necessary progression to invest in “the latest production technology, to support customer growth and the NCP100 Project [which] is a key milestone in the group's vision” as stated by Peter Starling, AlcoNCP’s Managing Director in a press release.