— Lack of support to small scale farmers remains a challenge- Mpasa

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Lack of support to small scale farmers remains a challenge- Mpasa

Kawambwa, February 7th, 2015, ZANIS —-  Government says the lack of mechanized equipment and the inaccessibility of agricultural micro finance remains a challenge to the small scale farmers countrywide.


Kawambwa District Commissioner (DC) Ivor Mpasa says small scale farmers in the country and Kawambwa in particular are grappling with lower productivity because of the lack of finances to buy farming implements and grow their businesses.


Mr. Mpasa said this in a speech read for him by Kawambwa District Administrative Officer (DAO) Mwitwa Kasengele yesterday at the handover of a tractor to Maybin Mwila under the Bunjimi Asset Plus loan facility.


He said the lack of mechanized equipment and the non-availability of the agricultural micro finance to small scale farmers continue to hinder and undermine the growth of the farming industry.


Mr. Mpasa commended ZNFU and NATSAVE for joining hands in uplifting the lives of the farmers through the provision of finances to enable them obtain mechanization loans.


He said financial packages such as ZNFU – ZANACO Lima credit scheme, the ZNFU – NATSAVE Bunjimi Asset Plus and the ZNFU Women Farmers’ innovation fund are designed to benefit farmers in rural districts such as Kawambwa.


He observed that under the packages, the farmers in Kawambwa and other rural districts stand to access fairly priced productive inputs, farm mechanization technologies and other assets.


He added that the financial packages will greatly help the farmers to participate in the agricultural market in a profitable manner.


The DC said the financial services will also help the small scale farmers in rural districts to access funds for the livestock development, agro processing and value addition for agricultural commodities such as cassava, fruits and vegetables.


The Bunjimi Asset Plus plan is National Savings and Credit bank (NATSAVE) and the Zambia National Farmers Union (ZNFU) partnership scheme that aims at empowering farmers with finances and farming implements to grow their businesses.