Willowton Group opened its doors in 1970 and has grown to become South Africa’s largest sunflower seed crusher as well as one of the leading competitors in the South African FMCG market.

The group operates across South Africa with manufacturing facilities in Pietermaritzburg, Johannesburg and Cape Town. A wide range of products encompasses edible oils, margarines and spreads, beauty, toilet and laundry soaps, candles, chocolate, baking and industrial fats. Well-known brands include, among others, Sunfoil, Sunshine D, D’lite, Crown, Nuvolite and most recently, Allsome rice, which is manufactured under a joint venture with Louis Dreyfus Commodities in a new state-of-the-art cleaning and packing facility at Willowton Group’s Pietermaritzburg site.

This new enterprise bears testament to the group’s commitment to seeking fresh opportunities and developing new quality products that are consistent with its ethos.

Key to the group’s success are the sound foundations of service excellence, continued investment in technology and human resources and the hands-on involvement of the directors in the day-to-day running of the business.

High quality standards are maintained and under-pinned by an advanced central technical centre. At the same time the company is continuously striving towards enhancing quality and keeping abreast of technological developments globally.

The Willowton Group manufacturing facility in Pietermaritzburg is the only oil and margarine manufacturer in KwaZulu-Natal to successfully operate the Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) Food Safety Management System. This is an internationally accepted food quality and safety management system which ensures that products are hygienic and safe for public consumption. HACCP accreditation provides assurance of the highest quality production and manufacturing standards within Willowton Group’s facility.

The Pietermaritzburg factory has also attained British Retail Consortium (BRC) accreditation, which is essential for securing contracts with companies supplying food products to major UK supermarkets such as Marks & Spencer, Tesco and Sainsbury’s.

Willowton Group products can be found in leading chain stores, supermarkets, wholesalers, retailers, independents and food manufacturers nationwide, as well as in Sub-Saharan Africa.

Through its Sunfoil brand, Willowton Group is actively involved in the sponsorship and development of cricket in South Africa at a national and grassroots level. Sunfoil is the proud sponsor of Proteas Test Series Cricket and Domestic Four Day Series Cricket. In keeping with its commitment to contributing towards the advancement of previously disadvantaged communities and individuals, Willowton Group also contributes to the KZN and Gauteng Cricket Union’s Development Programmes as well as the Sunfoil Schools Night League Tournament. The company’s Sunfoil Education Fund provides bursaries for children coming through development cricket programmes. The company also supports many other corporate social development initiatives.

By combining flexibility and vision with a sound business approach, the company is set to strengthen its position in the FMCG market even further, now and into the future.

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