By MAILESI BANDA
GLOBAL Industries Limited will in the 2018/2019 crop marketing season buy 100,000 tons of soya beans from small scale farmers through an out grower scheme organised by the National Union for Small-scale Farmers of Zambia (NUSFAZ).
Union director general, Frank Kayula also revealed that the newly found market for cotton will stimulate growth in the sub sector adding that farmers would now increase production from the current 300,000 metric tonnes to over two million tons in the next two years.
Speaking in an interview with the Daily Nation, he described as unfortunate that a farmer is currently making about K1 to K3 per day from the set national price of maize adding that creating more markets for crops would help the farmer improve their livelihood.
“The association will engage farmers in out-grower schemes for cotton that will enable them sell their produce to global industries.”
“We have partnered with Global industries in Ndola in a soya bean value chain project and for a start they plan to buy 100,000 metric tonnes from the farmers starting during the 2019 farming season,” he said.
Dr.Kayula explained that the target to increase cotton production from 300, 000 metric tonnes to two million metric tonnes per year just from the small scale farmers will help in the attainment of the set agenda in the Seventh National Development Plan.
He stated that the agenda to grow the Zambian economy through agriculture is only attainable when farmers start making money from the sector.
And Dr Kayula revealed that the association was getting into partnership with the National Pensions Scheme Authority (NAPSA) that will see them give loans to small scale farmers to grow cotton and soya beans.
He stated that the project though in its infancy will see farmers qualifying for pension as they grow old.