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How this Rwandan potato crisps company wants to compete against Lay’s

Pascal Murasira is co-founder and managing partner of Hollanda FairFoods, a Rwanda-based food-processing company that manufactures potato crisps under the brand name Winnaz. Murasira tells How we made it in Africa about the opportunity for commercial potato processing in Rwanda, the challenges associated with food packaging, and his plans to position Winnaz as the healthiest potato-based snacks brand in the region. “I previously worked for NGOs in the agriculture industry and I noticed that despite being a leading producer of potatoes in sub-Saharan Africa, there was limited value addition in commercial processing. Rwanda was importing a lot of snacks from Kenya, South Africa, Europe… yet all the raw materials we needed is available locally. In 2013 I met my business partner Thijs Boer and we decided to set up our own potato crisps manufacturing business. We began production in 2015. Winnaz crisps comes in one flavour in 40g packaging, selling at about RFW550 ($0.7). We plan to introduce a bigger size of 150g, unveil additional flavours, and start to serve big buyers such as hotels that need products in bulk. Our core target market is the urban, young consumer in Rwanda and across the region. We currently retail in Rwanda and Uganda, with plans to expand to other countries in the region.” More

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