USSEC organized a one-on-one soybean oil processing visit in Tunisia to the three largest oil refineries and to Carthage Grain, a crushing plant, from September 20 to 22. The three refineries included MEDOIL (a branch of the PGH Group), Ets Abdelmoula, and Ets Slama.
USSEC consultant Brent Harold German conducted the plant visits and meetings. Dr. Riadh Karma, USSEC consultant in Tunisia, escorted Mr. German on the visits. During the first day of the visit, Morgan Haas, Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) Agriculture Attaché for North African countries, as well as Nebil Maaouia, the Agriculture Specialist at the U.S. embassy in Tunis, joined the USSEC team during these visits.
The first visit was to MEDOIL, on September 20 in Bir Mcherga, in the northeast part of Tunisia.
During the visit to Carthage Grain’s crushing plant, Mr. German emphasized on how to improve the final process and obtain a better quality soybean oil and how to decrease oil losses.
During the last day, Mr. German visited the refineries of Ets Abdelmoula and Ets Slama.
During his visit to the refineries, Mr. German made exhaustive tours to the processing units with each plant staff and had interesting discussions during meetings with key people of each company. He provided recommendations regarding equipment adjustments, new methods of processing, and some advice regarding new technologies like the “nano” equipment. He also explained how to obtain better soybean oil quality and higher yields.
USSEC’s visit to the Tunisian soybean oil industry contributed to increase the awareness of U.S. Soy products’ (beans and oil) good quality, improved the understanding of the value of U.S. soybeans and soybean oil compared to other origins, and educated the main local oil processors on how they can best improve their process as well as the oil quality, and also increase production.