11 November 2022
Farmers in Senqunyane access market for their produce
Farmers in Senqunyane Priority Sub Catchment (PSC) have found a way out of their struggles and they are now increasing their competitiveness and strengthening their produce of potatoes and cabbage.
This comes after ReNOKA facilitated the discussions between Ha-Tsi’u farmers and a commodity trader, Maluti Fresh Produce Market which subsequently led to an agreement between the two sides.
Commercial crop farming in Senqunyane has been experiencing a slow growth rate over the years with farmers struggling to find a more accessible market for their fresh produce. This led to some post-harvest losses. However, with this agreement, potato and cabbage growers in Senqunyane have been assured of a market for their produce by Maluti Fresh Produce Market.
Tanki Baba has been growing potatoes in Senqunyane in the last 3 years, but his main challenge was finding the market for his produce.
He said, “this is a major relief to the farmers who were carrying the burden of lost produce. We appreciate the help of ReNOKA and Maluti Fresh Produce Market. Many farmers are benefitting from the ReNOKA programme because it’s also guiding us on the best farming approaches while also protecting the land and water”.
He further complimented ReNOKA for helping to catalyse linkages between the government, private sector, NGO’s, communities and environmental advisors and creating strategic coalition partnerships to raise awareness on the importance of conserving land and water. This aligns well with the programme’s objective of improving the livelihoods of the communities alongside the implementation of various best farming practices.
Under the agreement, farmers and the market will agree on the quantity to be produced. Moreover, the market will supply their own labeled packages to the potato farmers and come to collect the product when is ready for harvest at Ha Tsiu.
Catholic Relief Services (CRS) as a partner of ReNOKA trained farmers on Savings and Internal Lending and Marketing of Agricultural Produce. Resulting from this training, savings groups were established among the farmers. Additionally, the marketing groups were established to help farmers market their produce.
Speaking on this, CRS Area Coordinator in Senqunyane Katleho Rathebe said, “from the savings groups, farmers are allowed to borrow money to finance their potato production and this is a great step that will enhance their production”.
Along with this opportunity afforded to the farmers, Maluti Fresh Produce Market is conducting the trainings for farmers in Ha-Ts’iu on the market requirements such as classifying/sorting their produce, packaging and transportation. So far, over 1000 bags of potatoes have been sold at the market.
ReNOKA (‘we are a river’) is a national programme and citizen movement for the restoration of land and water in Lesotho and the Orange-Senqu basin. Support for ReNOKA is provided through a partnership between the Government of Lesotho, the European Union and the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ). The EU and BMZ contributions are implemented through a technical assistance project “Support to Integrated Catchment Management in Lesotho” by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH.
For more information
Visit the ReNOKA website at www.renoka.org
Engage with us on social media:
National ICM Coordinator, ICM Coordination Unit
GIZ Programme Manager, Support to Integrated Catchment Management (ICM) in Lesotho
‘This publication was produced with the financial support of the European Union and the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ). Its contents are the sole responsibility of the Integrated Catchment Management unit and do not necessarily reflect the views of the European Union or the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)’