Agritech Expo round-up by Judith Namutowe –
MUSIKA Development Initiatives Zambia in collaboration with Technoserve and the World Food Programme (WFP) has launched the ‘Zero Waste Commercialisation Post-Harvest Loss Solutions’.
The three organisations established a ‘task force’ to drive the development of the post-harvest technology marketing Zambia through the implementation of a multi-dimension approach to accelerate the availability and adoption of an array of technologies in lower end of the market.
The initiative was launched at the just ended 2018 Agritech Expo in Chisamba on Friday and its objective is to reduce loss, increase food security, farming and ultimately national income from agriculture.
Musika Head of Corporate Affairs Pamela Hamasaka said shortly after the launch that the organisation’s role in the task force would be to identify, support willing and able actors on the supply side such as manufacturing and suppliers.
Other roles are that agro-dealers should offer a bundled service involving not just the marketing and sale of technologies, but also technical training and after sales support that will ultimately benefit the smallholder farmer.
Ms Hamasaka said WFP on the other hand would focus on stimulating and educating the demand side for on-farm storage solutions within the proposed project.
“This will involve training a group of trainers, utilising experienced regional WFP staff and facilitating farmer trainings on steps towards crop preservation including best practice at each stage from harvest, dying and storage,” Ms Hamasaka said.
She said, Technoserve would be responsible for conducting an in-depth industry assessment of the current state of the Post-Harvest technology market, constraints to its development and opportunities for growth, with reference to international best practice and innovative solutions.
Ms Hamasaka said this would result in an Industry Strategic Plan (ISP) discussed and agreed with key stakeholders including industry, government representatives, key Non Governmental Organisations (NGOs) farmer organisations and others.