Savanna and Klipdrift maker Distell invests in Cannabis industry amid booze ban

Photo by Aphiwat chuangchoem from Pexels

One of South Africa’s top producers of alcohol, Distell, recently announced its plan to diversify amid the ongoing pandemic and crippling booze ban.

During the first alcohol ban, Distell reported that it lost roughly 100 million litres in sales volumes and an estimated R4.3 billion in revenue.

As South Africa’s lockdown prohibition laws continue to cripple the liquor industry, Distell announced that it has bought a stake in the local brand RETHINK. The company produces a wide range of dagga-based products, including CBD oils, teas, and skincare items.

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According to Business Insider, Distell, which owns popular brands such as Savanna, Hunter’s, Klipdrift, Sedgwick’s Old Brown, Nederburg and J.C. Le Roux, has bought a 20% stake in RETHINK. Distell’s investment in the cannabis industry is expected to fast-track the sector’s growth, with the company looking to contribute its expertise in distribution and marketing as part of the new acquisition.

While still in its infancy, South Africa’s dagga market is expected to double in value by 2024. According to the Department of Trade and Industry and the Agricultural Research Council, the local cannabis industry is set to be worth R14 billion soon, with predictions of a surge towards R28 billion within the next three years.

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