South African Manufacturer Shifts to Solar-Powered Production

by Adenike Adeodun

South Africa’s leading home appliance manufacturer, Defy, has shifted towards sustainability, launching a line of solar-powered appliances at its Ladysmith facility. This initiative, a significant push for eco-friendly solutions in the appliance sector, coincided with a visit by Ebrahim Patel, the Trade, Industry, and Competition Minister, to the Ladysmith-based Defy plant.

ESI Africa reported that the CEO of Defy Appliances, Mustafa Soylu, remarked on the move, highlighting it as a groundbreaking effort to produce green appliances, positioning South Africa at the forefront of combating climate change.

Backing the transition, Patel commented, “Addressing climate change requires a complete overhaul of technologies, both domestically and industry-wide. South Africa is firmly committed to shaping future technology and meeting the demand for eco-conscious products.”

Harnessing Solar Power for Home Appliances

Defy’s new product range, powered solely by solar energy, comes with integrated battery systems, making them more efficient and environmentally friendly. This is a significant leap from Defy’s earlier hybrid models, which depended partially on the national grid.

The eco-friendly appliance lineup, set to hit the market by January 2024, comprises refrigerators, freezers, stoves, ovens, dryers, and top-loading washing machines. This range will allow households to fully embrace green living in their kitchens and laundry rooms. Emphasising affordability, Patel noted, “It’s commendable that Defy aims to price these appliances reasonably, paving the way for a wider consumer shift towards green products.”

Employing over 2,000 individuals locally, Defy rolls out 1.5 million appliances annually within South Africa. Alongside bolstering domestic production, the company also exports to 35 African nations, underscored Soylu, affirming South Africa’s dominance as Africa’s premier home appliance producer.

Defy’s green move not only aligns with global climate change mitigation efforts but also mirrors South Africa’s commitment to innovation, economic development, and the well-being of its populace.

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