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Décio Catarro

ANGOLA - Agriculture

Décio Catarro

CEO, Carrinho Industry

Bio

Décio Catarro has training in the areas of electrotechnical engineering, branches of production, and energy transport and holds a post-graduation in the area of management of investment projects. He specializes in the design of food industry units, obtained his experience in the management of industrial processes. Later, he graduated in industrial operations management and supply chain management. Catarro held various leadership and management positions in engineering and maintenance of food industry factories in several European countries, until reaching the general management and administration of industrial companies, even before embracing the Carrinho project.

"The opportunity was to have all our factories operational in Angola with no competition."
Carrinho is an Angolan family-owned company committed to developing the first vertically integrated organizational structure in the food sector.
What are the main activities of Carrinho in the country?

Once we started to work on the vision behind Carrinho Industry, we were up and running within three years and built a company that could make Angola a food self-sufficient and healthy country. The company at that time was in the catering business as well as logistics as a trader. It bought food products for resale in Angola. With that, we created this project, and we developed the company creating the first industrial park in Benguela. We were obliged to transform Leonor Carrinho company into the large structure we are today. We have the Carrinho holding company and three different firms within it. One o is Carrinho Agri, which takes care of the agriculture business. Then, there are Carrinho Indústria and Carrinho Comércio, which take care of manufacturing, production, distribution, and sales, as well as our Bem Barato stores located all over Angola. Each company has its own autonomy leadership but with same vision and targets from Carrinho Holding.

What opportunities did you see during the pandemic?

The opportunity was to have all our factories operational in Angola with no competition. What we also discovered is that it is important to develop agriculture because if countries don’t have their own primary production in agriculture, it’s impossible to sustain such a sizable food park. The opportunity we took was to develop the agricultural business and not be dependent on anybody and imported raw materials. Angola has all the possibilities for good local production. The company has two wheat mills, two maize mills, and two rice mills. Additionally, we produce short and long pasta. We have a plant producing biscuits on five lines. Incidentally, we provide lunches for 200,000 kids per day featuring biscuits, breakfast cereals, and some baby food or formula. We also have a packaging area for all of our products. Apart from that, we have a food plant that produces animal feed. We have two refineries for edible oil, or for crude oil that we transform into edible oil. Our plant is set up to fill one, three, five liter, or 250 milliliter bottles. We also have a plant for mayonnaise, ketchup, and sauces, and another for candy, among a total of 17 different plants. We are a completely integrated food park. Our main customer is Carrinho Comércio, and our major supplier is set to be Carrinho Agri, for wheat, rice, and maize. We have a total capacity of production of 1.5 million tons of food products. Normally, worldwide logistics accounts for around 20 to 25% of the total costs of such a food park. Here, the number is just 5% only.

What are the company’s most recent investments?

In 2022, we are investing in agriculture, but in the industrial component, we also have another ongoing project namely a sugar refinery. Our refinery will have a capacity of 3,000 tons per day for all types of sugar, even powdered. We will need to have it running within the next two years. The second project is the seeds crushing plant to crush and extract oil from soya beans, sunflowers, and more. This crusher will have a capacity of 4,000 tons per day of soya bean. After close to this one, we will install also a glucose plant, which is needed for candies, sweet milk condensate, biscuit, breakfast, cereals, and so forth.

What is the roadmap for Carrinho for the coming years?

Our president, Nelson Carrinho, always says that we are a project company. We need to build a new food park three times the size of our current one in the north of Angola. Because, first, we need to feed the local market. We are also set to produce certain products traditional in Angola, such as cassava, in the forms of cassava flour, cassava starch, and cassava fuba. We intend to transform this small-scale production into a big one.

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