Tosett Agro Industries Ltd, a leading industrial firm says it has seen energy costs fall by 70 percent and lower carbon emissions from its operations following its decision to switch from diesel to gas plant.
Femi Olaoye, the company’s head of operations described that beyond uninterrupted power supply, which has reduced the frequency of machine breakdown due to the sensitive nature of factory equipment, the consistency has helped.
“The major factor was that the quantity of diesel supplied and its cost did not yield an equal amount of work. In addition, difficulties around sourcing quality diesel abound as all the problems with diesel management.”
“When you look at the cost of one (1) standard cubic meter of gas versus the equivalent quantity of diesel, you will see that the in savings is massive. Gas is almost less in terms of cost. So, it has saved us a lot of money as energy cost has come down.”
Clarke Energy, a multinational specialist energy solutions firm, supplied the 5.1 megawatts (MW) gas power plant solution at Tosett Agro Industries Ltd and its sister company JB Farms Ltd. The supply included design, technical drawings, engines, installation, and commissioning and currently provides equipment maintenance.
Yiannis Tsantilas, the Managing Director of Clarke Energy in Nigeria, said,
“Clarke Energy has demonstrated its expertise in delivering reliable and durable power solutions to boost profitable agro-industrial processing in Nigeria. Its relationship with the leaders at Tosett Agro began before the commissioning of the initial 3.4 megawatts (MW) first phase installation in 2017. The expansion was possible because of the extraordinary leadership foresight at Tosett/JB Farms and their strong commitment to serving the expanding domestic demand for oil palm products. At the same time, ensuring food and feedstock security in Nigeria, through backward integration and creating wealth, especially for the farmers.”
Olaoye describes that Clarke Energy provide the company with predictive and preventive support services because the generators are internet-enabled, allowing remote monitoring and support.
“If we have issues, we can call them to attend to it, even at odd hours. It is a whole system that has been built efficiently to ensure that we have consistency and reliability.”
JB Farms Ltd has been in operation for over 20 years and is involved in Oil Palm Plantation management, producing Crude Edible Palm Oil and Crude Palm Kernel Oil. Tosett, which has been in business for about six (6) years, handles the industrial value chain side of both companies, producing processed forms of edible palm oil and palm kernel oil, including Bulk Soap Noodles (Sodium palmitate, 3401). The fully owned Nigerian companies were founded by Mr. Ajibola Adebutu and located in Odogbolu Ogun state. JB farms Ltd has plantations in several other states.
Nigeria has a deficit of about 3 million metric tonnes of edible oils and Tosett/JB Farms like many other companies are working to fill that gap.
“Before now, many of the oils we consumed were imported and of low quality. But since we came into the field, we have been producing high-quality international standard oils for local consumption and industrial use.”
Olaoye said improved local production of edible oils has reduced the volume of foreign exchange spent on importation, provides feedstock for companies, and creates employment.
With over 3,000 workers engaged in managing plantations, milling operations, and industrial processes, the company is helping to reduce Nigeria’s youth unemployment problem. Through taxation, Olaoye said the group is supporting the Federal Government.
“Our engagement with the Federal Government over the last couple of years has been fruitful because they have seen the contribution we have been making to agricultural development, infrastructure, and the transfer of technical know-how to our youth population,” he said.
Olaoye said JB farms and Tosett Agro Ltd have been at the forefront of providing the Federal Government with a template that can be replicated across the country in terms of backward integration.
“Right now, a lot of the feedstock we have about 60 to 65 percent, comes from our industrial backend. We source the rest within Nigeria and from the West African sub-region.”
“So, we are doing this to augment what we can produce. It does not mean we are not expanding our backend; we are also doing that; we are currently working in Ondo state to expand our oil palm plantation. “
“My advice to companies that want to get into this field would be to integrate backward, starting from the backend before you build the industrial frontend,” he said.