April 06: Obtaining credit on stored maize

  • Play:
  • Song Name: Obtaining credit on stored maize
  • Artist: WRENmedia
  • Album: AGFAX
  • Year: 2006

Suggested introduction
At harvest time, when markets are flooded with crops, prices tend to be low. Those farmers who are able to store their crop can often earn a much better price later in the year. But storing a crop is, for many, not an easy option. Farmers may not have good storage facilities, so the quality of the crop is quickly affected. And farmers frequently have to sell soon after harvest, at a low price, because they need money for paying bills or buying household essentials.

For maize farmers in Zambia, the development of a new warehouse system that gives access both to safe storage and to financial credit, could offer a solution to these problems. Six crop warehouses have so far joined the scheme. Warehouse staff have been trained and inspected by the Zambia Agricultural Commodity Agency, known as ZACA (pron. Zaka). Once good storage standards are in place, the warehouses become registered, and can then offer a guaranteed storage facility to farmers and grain traders. More than that, however, ZACA has also been working with the banking industry in Zambia, so that farmers, who are given a receipt for their stored grain by the warehouse, can use this to obtain credit. Mike Davison spoke to some of those who have been involved with the warehouse system, starting with Martin Hamusiya, chief examiner at ZACA. Martin began by explaining why being able to store grain is so important to Zambian maize farmers.

TAPE IN "The Zambian market is very interesting ...
TAPE OUT ... will be quick enough to help us."

Closing announcement: Roderick Nyendwa, secretary of the Kulya Nkona co-operative, ending that report on a warehouse system in Zambia that aims to offer maize farmers both reliable storage facilities and access to credit.