Twiga Foods, Bamburi Cement, and Honda Motorcycles Kenya are among the companies that could lose imported products in a KRA auction to recoup unpaid duty.
Twiga Foods’ 5,130 crates of imported onions are among the products, according to the KRA, while Bamburi has yet to clear 29 containers of laterite—a mineral used in clinker production.
The taxman notified the businesses that they had 30 days to clear the products and pay any overdue taxes.
Chai Trading and the County Government of Kajiado, which stands to lose two ambulances and a Ford vehicle, are among those whose products are up for sale.
“Interested buyers may view the goods at the Customs Warehouse, ICDE on 24th June 2022 and 27th June 2022, during office hours,” the notice reads in part.
KRA regularly auctions goods that have overstayed at their facilities due to various reasons. Among them is because owners fail to pay taxes or misdeclared their goods.
This comes just days after Twiga Foods invested Sh1 billion to launch a new subsidiary known as Twiga Fresh.
The new subsidiary is focused on modern and commercial farming to help supply informal retailers and urban consumers with lower cost, better quality and safe food.
Through the $10M (Sh1 billion) investment, Twiga Fresh will scale the efficient production of domestic horticultural staples like onions, tomatoes and watermelons, significantly lowering the cost. The investment in Kenya will make it one of the largest single horticultural farms in Africa focused purely on the domestic market.
Over the past few years, Twiga has been working to solve the problem of the rising cost of food in urban areas. Food accounts for close to 60% of household expenditure across major cities in Africa.
The last few months have been particularly difficult for the retail business and for consumers as disposable income has taken a beating from both the COVID pandemic and the increasing commodity inflation caused by the war in Ukraine.
Additionally, there is limited investment in revolutionizing the productivity and modernization of food production in Africa, which is leading to significant growth in the importation of basic food, making food security an increasingly elusive goal.
Twiga was nominated in the Times Top 100 Most Influential Companies 2022.