Tusker Cider, Uganda Breweries Limited (UBL)’s latest product, will create a steady market for apples grown by Ugandan farmers, according to the brewery’s leadership.
The cider, which is an alcoholic beverage made from apples, was unveiled during an event held at Legends Rugby Grounds, that was attended by UBL’s leadership, customers and several public and private sector stakeholders including Stephen Asiimwe, Executive Director of the Private Sector Foundation of Uganda (PSFU), Hon. Henry Banyenzaki, Director of Monitoring & Evaluation at OWC, Eng. David Luyimbazi, Deputy Executive Director of KCCA, and many more.
Speaking during the ceremony, the chief guest, Minister of State For Finance, Planning and Economic Development In Charge Of General Duties, Hon. Henry Musasizi said, “We appreciate the role that UBL is playing in the sourcing of local raw materials for your products, thereby providing a ready market for agricultural produce and contributing towards the Buy Uganda, Build Uganda agenda.”
He added that the government’s National Development Plan (NDP) identifies agriculture as a vital growth sector to Uganda’s economy capable of reducing poverty and stimulating economic growth.
Eunice Waweru, UBL’s acting Managing Director, said, “Tusker Cider represents a whole new direction through which we continue with our proud 75-year legacy of contributing to the growth of the Ugandan economy. In the coming years, it will be made from 100% locally sourced apples, under our Local Raw Materials (LRM) program.”
The brewery’s Local Raw Materials (LRM) program seeks to build a strong and resilient supply chain to satisfy the business’ annual demand for high-quality inputs like sorghum, barley and cassava while empowering smallholder farmers all over the country.
The program – which started almost 20 years ago – injects over UGX 45 billion annually for the purchase and distribution of agricultural inputs and modern machinery to over 30,000 farmers that supply over 95% of the raw materials used by the business, with a goal of sourcing 100% by 2030.
On the fun side
The launch was hosted by TV and radio host, Sheila Salta, who was also unveiled as the brand’s ambassador.
Speaking to the product, Emmy Hashakimana, UBL’s Marketing and Innovation Director, said, “Tusker Cider delivers a rich fruity flavour with a sharp crisp finish that is lightly carbonated, very refreshing with a subtle natural sweetness – all designed to excite your taste buds as you celebrate life every day. It is the first cider to be locally sourced and produced in East Africa, making it a unique opportunity for us to build a deeper connection with our consumers.”
And build a deeper connection with the consumers, they did, as the event coincided with the reopening of the night economy after close to two years of closure over the COVID-19 pandemic.
The guests – who never missed an opportunity to echo the “Tuli Waweelu” mantra – were entertained by DJs Roja and Xzyl, with the crowning moment being an electric performance by Azawi, who performed hits from her 2021 album, African Music, like Party Mood, Slow Dancing and My Year.
Hashakimana added that the cider, which is under UBL’s Innovations line, joins the brewery’s track record of introducing never before seen innovative products that continue to challenge the adult beverages sector like Uganda Waragi Coconut and Pineapple, Bond 7 Honey, Gordons Pink and most recently, Baileys Delight.
Tusker Cider, which is best served chilled, is available at the recommended retail price of UGX 3,500 and is available through on multiple e-commerce platforms like Jumia, Kikuubo Online and SafeBoda; supermarkets; distributors; stockists; and different bars around the country.