Nelna Group to invest Rs. 1 b in fruit and vegetable processing facility | Sunday Observer

Nelna Group to invest Rs. 1 b in fruit and vegetable processing facility

The head table. From left: General Manager Kapila Rajapakshe, General Manager Dr. Mangala Amarasinghe, Directress Punya Nanayakkara, Chairman W. G. Eddie Gunapala Nanayakkara, General Manager Parakrama Girihagama, Chief Finance Officer Nalin Silva.
The head table. From left: General Manager Kapila Rajapakshe, General Manager Dr. Mangala Amarasinghe, Directress Punya Nanayakkara, Chairman W. G. Eddie Gunapala Nanayakkara, General Manager Parakrama Girihagama, Chief Finance Officer Nalin Silva.

Under the novel concept of taking our country to the fore, retaining our own identity (Apekama), the 100 percent local enterprise, Nelna celebrated its 20th anniversary of business operations.

“I am very happy that the small business that I launched two decades ago has grown to be a conglomerate today. The path to success was by no means an easy journey,” Nelna Group Founder and Chairman W. G. Eddie Gunapala Nanayakkara told the media at an event to mark its 20th anniversary.

The negative perception regarding the industry is the biggest drawback we encounter at present. However, this has not hampered our growth and we plan to set up a modern poultry manufacturing facility soon, he said.

“There were a large number of people who stood with me in the beginning that made Nelna brand a huge success. Among them the support I received from well-wishers and clientele, which could be considered the lifeline of the company, is unforgettable. Our company provides customers only quality and hygienic products.

“At no time are unhealthy goods sold under the Nelna brand. My objective is to convert the Nelna brand which has won the local market by winning the trust and confidence of the Sri Lankan people, to a global brand,” the Chairman said.

“Our operations are vertically integrated and there are plans to expand the footprint further. We are working with a number of countries and we need to change the mechanism to invest more.

We do not ask government support or any subsidy. We do not pollute the environment and consider long term thinking is necessary to move forward,” he said.

Nelna has become a large-scale mango producer with an investment of Rs. 600 million under the Nelna Mango brand and produces quality mangoes on a large scale under the TJC category for the local and foreign market. There are over 70,000 mango trees spread over 500 acres.

Nelna has made a huge investment to produce mangoes to international standards and has won the Global GAP certification for its effort, Director, Nelna Group, Punya Nanayakkara said. The Nelna Group will invest Rs. 1 billion to set up a fruit and vegetable processing house to make maximum use of these products when they are in excess supply.

The Chairman’s wife Sita Ranjani and children Punya, Hemamali and Asanka are directors of the company. 

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