Grade 3 pupils from Mdantsane’s Vulumzi Primary School enjoy a meal as part of the education department’s feeding scheme. Picture: MARNÉ ERASMUS
Grade 3 pupils from Mdantsane’s Vulumzi Primary School enjoy a meal as part of the education department’s feeding scheme. Picture: MARNÉ ERASMUS

Nutritional Holdings, which makes and distributes dry foods aimed at lower-income consumers, is considering temporarily downsizing its operations as Covid-19 shutdowns affect school feeding schemes.

The supply of dry food products to feeding schemes has been affected, the group said, adding it supports Covid-19 containment measures and remains committed to supply food during the lockdown.

Based on the reduced sales volumes due to the lockdown the group is considering “downsizing its operations temporarily while also making permanent adjustments to its administrative costs”.

Nutritional Holdings’ brands include Sungold and Super 8 and the group employed 108 people as of 2018. It operates a dry-food mass production facility in Klerksdorp in the North West.

The group reported in its six months to end-August 2019 that it was struggling with a “very low order book” in its food division as a result of reduced spending by both retail consumers and government departments.

“Despite having been awarded contracts to supply both the department of health and basic education with fortified food products, orders from both these departments have been considerably down compared to the forecast during the period under review,” the group said at the time.

The group’s interim loss widened to R4.7m in its half-year to end-August 2019, from R2.8m previously.

The group had a market capitalisation of R137m on Tuesday afternoon, when its little-traded share was unmoved at 1c.

Update: July 14 2020
This article has been updated with additional information.

gernetzkyk@businesslive.co.za

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