Maputo, Mozambique, 28 April – Italian company Bioenergy Italia is investing US$20 million in jatropha production in the district of Moamba, in Mozambique’s Maputo province, which it plans to export to Italy to be processes and transformed into biofuel, said João Colombo, the agricultural technician involved in the project.
Speaking to Mozambican newspaper Notícias, Colombo said that the crop had been started in October 2008, with a total of 10 plants, and that the project now had a total of 5,300 plants on a 70-hectare plot.
In the long term the project will make use of the 120 hectares initially planned and expects to harvest 200 tons of jatropha per year. The second phase of the project will be construction of a processing unit at the location to transform the jatropha into biofuel which will then be exported to Italy and consumed locally.
Colombo noted that tests had been carried out using seeds from different countries, such as Brazil, India, the Dominica Republic and Tanzania and that the seed from Mozambique had been chosen as it had the greatest yield, of up to 2 kilograms per plant. (macauhub)