A Taste of Mageu – SiVEST Project Management Team part of Revolutionising Traditional Drink with RCL Foods' New Mageu Bottle Production Plant.


Mageu, a popular traditional drink which has filled fridges in South African stores for ages, will now be hitting the shelves – yes, the shelves, not the fridges - thanks to RCL Foods' new bottle production plant. RCL Beverages, part of listed entity RCL Foods, produces the maize drink Mageu at its manufacturing facility in Pretoria West.

RCL Beverages embarked on a R127m investment to construct a new Mageu production and packaging line

"What distinguishes this plant from the existing facility is that the product is sterilised using the UHT (Ultra High Temperature) process which is then aseptically packed in plastic bottles, providing for a product with a 6 month shelf life without requiring refrigeration. At the heart of the system is the aseptic filling machine built by Ampack BOSCH in Germany" says SiVEST Project Manager, Sean Wild.

Whole Bottling Plant in production

SiVEST Project Management division was contracted by RCL Foods Technical Services to provide project management services ensuring that the project was delivered on time and within budget whilst meeting quality requirements of food hygiene production. The project work entailed re-purposing an existing industrial building to accommodate the new food factory. This comprised the construction of new floors, drains, internal walls, the installation of water, steam, compressed air, nitrogen gas, fire protection, HVAC, electrical and communications services to support the process plant. This was then followed by the procurement, installation and commissioning of all process equipment. A new laboratory was also established and installed.

Mageu UHT Production Plant with Aseptic tank in foreground

SiVEST's involvement began with a gap analysis of the existing design and procurement packages in the context of the existing building and matching utilities requirements of the new plant to available utilities. A detailed activity programme for the project implementation was then prepared, taking into account the various equipment procurement packages and their contractual timeframes for delivery, then integrating these into a combined schedule. This included the design, procurement and installation of the additional items identified to have been omitted during the gap analysis. Once the programme was agreed, SiVEST was instrumental in expediting the various packages and local authority approvals for the project, and managing the package interfaces, resulting in the timeous completion and commissioning of the plant, and culminating in the successful sterility testing of the installation.