Department yet to discuss EIA for milk factory

The Department of Climate Change and Environmental Affairs is yet to meet to discuss the findings of the second environmental impact assessment at a place where Capital Dairy Industry in Lilongwe has installed its plant to start processing milk.

The first environmental impact assessment (EIA) was conducted by the department when owners of the factory indicated that they will build a warehouse only to change midway to have a milk factory.

In an interview on Monday, the department’s chief director Bright Kumwembe said the committee will meet to look at the findings before issuing a report.

“The report can either be positive or negative depending on the findings, but as I have already said, we will be meeting soon,” he said.

Capital Dairy Industry managing director Mohsin Salim in an interview on Monday said they are waiting for the EIA before production starts.

He said the firm already received a pre-certificate last week from Malawi Bureau of Standards (MBS) after they conducted tests, but production will only start once results of EIA are out.

“What has tied our hands is the EIA and there is nothing we can do other than wait,” said Salim.

Last year, the Parliamentary Committee on Climate Change and Natural Resources summoned officials from the Lilongwe City Council, Capital Dairy Industry and other government agencies to discuss how documents for the plot were changed from commercial land to mixed use.

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