Blumberg Grain was featured in a Miami Today article titled "Gables firm, Egypt partner for grain security" that looks into the company's progress in Africa and continued development of grain storage facilities to reduce post-harvest loss. An excerpt follows:
The company, which signed a contract with the Egyptian government late last year, is currently developing 93 wheat storage facilities across Egypt and expects the first few to be completed by the end of April, said David Blumberg, CEO of Blumberg Grain-West Africa.
He told Miami Today the facilities will process 3.7 million tons of wheat annually and store 750,000 tons, saving Egypt about $200 million a year.
"Post-harvest wheat loss in emerging markets is the primary problem for governments to solve," Mr. Blumberg said. "The loss, between harvest and first sale, is about 50% and due mainly to the lack of storage containers."
That's the ultimate goal of the Blumberg Grain project: to support the Egyptian government in recovering crops lost to post-harvest fatality.
Egypt is the world's largest importer of wheat and Africa's largest producer. However, there are numerous threats to grain in Egypt and other emerging countries, including pest attacks, rot, and theft – or what is referred to in the industry as "leakage." This leakage is often distributed to thieves' friends and family who sell the wheat on the black market.
Currently, Mr. Blumberg said, Egypt's wheat is stored in open-air storage facilities called shounas. He explained the wheat is received from farmers in bags and then stacked in piles, thus exposed to the sun and elements.
"There's a high likelihood that it will go bad due to the weather," Mr. Blumberg said. "The Egyptian pigeon is the worst pest and responsible for about 20% of the loss."