SIMON MUNTEMBA writes
THE Zambian Farmers Support Network for Value Crops (ZFSNVC) has launched and signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Shetty and Nayak to work together in crops value addition and supply chain.
ZFSNVC is an indigenous civil society organization with the mandate to promote and protect the interest of smallholder farmers involved in the production of various crops, while Shetty and Nayak was a subsidiary of ALRAAF Group of companies that provided markets for farmer’s products and increase product usage through value addition.
The partnership was signed on Saturday, , by country coordinator for ZFSNVC Given Mung’omba and chief executive officer of Shetty and Nayak, Raul Nayak in the presence of a network of smallholder farmers involved in the production of value crops, horticulture, aquaculture, small livestock management and natural conservation.
The partners will work together to add value to groundnuts by generating them into well-packed and labelled peanut butter and cooking oil.
Speaking at the ceremony, Mr Mung’omba said the launch and partnership signing event aligned to make the agricultural sector that contributes 20 percent to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
Mr Mung’omba said the partnership will explore and pursue joint initiatives that will result in the reduction of poverty while improving health outcomes for the impoverished smallholder farmers.
He said the MoU will significantly result into the promotion and improvement of food security and elimination of poverty as it is the mandate of the network to ensure that through its transformation.
Mr Mung’omba said the MoU marked a milestone in the transformation of the network to rise to maximum potential and be counted upon as a tool that shaped the agricultural sector in Zambia.
He said as a network, they were looking forward to strengthen their bond with several other interested parties to tap into their strengths and opportunities to optimize their financial, technical and human resource capabilities.
Speaking at the same event, ALRAAF Group of companies commercial director Nelson Mwale assured farmers that together with ZFSNVC, they have the capacity to handle their crops in value addition and supply chain.
Mr Mwale said Shetty and Nayak was committed to a cause of taking agriculture to higher heights through supporting the local farmers because “a nation with a healthy agriculture sector is a rich nation resource-wise”.