Government acknowledges importance of value addition
Mongu, July 7, ZANIS —-Government says value addition to agricultural produce is critical in maximising profit and growth of the agricultural sector.
Deputy Minister in the Ministry of Agriculture, Grayford Monde said this when he officiated this year’s provincial show in Mongu in Western province.
Mr Monde explained that the Livestock Development and Animal Health Project will help in improving the productivity and value addition of agricultural produce from smallholder producers in the province and increase rural income.
Mr Monde stressed that the project will accelerate shared growth and eradicate poverty by improving smallholder access to markets.
The Deputy Minister disclosed that government through the Citizens Economic Empowerment Commission will soon give out loans to groups and individuals involved in the cassava industry in a bid to encourage crop diversification.
Mr Monde said the reduction of subsidies on farm inputs is aimed at increasing the support towards the diversification of the agricultural sector through disease control and construction of grain storages.
He also said government will provide the Farmers Input Support Programme for 2013/2014 saying a 50kg bag of inputs will cost K100 while seed will be given free.
Mr Monde commended the cooperative enterprises and farmers for remaining strong in the wake of climate change noting that there is need to embrace new agriculture practices in-order to survive in the changing environment.
This year’s provincial show was celebrated under the theme: Business in a Changing Environment.