By Maravi Post Contributor
Fruit and vegetable growers this week joined together and formed the Horticultural Farmers’ Cooperative Society Limited (HOFACOL) that aims to promote their commercial interests.
Announcing the development, HOFACOL Secretary Ngaba Chatata said locally-grown fruits and vegetables have the potential to improve the country’s economy and that time was ripe for the horticulturalists to mobilise under one roof.
“Every day, every household in Malawi consumes fruits and vegetables or products made from fruits and vegetables. Furthermore, Malawi is daily importing these, thereby externalizing our hard-earned forex,” said Chatata.
She said globally, there is huge demand for horticultural products both for fresh and dried fruits and vegetables, an opportunity she said, Malawi has not fully exploited.
“We need your support, buy locally produced vegetables and fruits as they are fresh and will not just boost your health and nutrition, but also our national economy. To farmers, let’s join hands to develop Malawi. Our focus should be on quality, let’s seek information on how best to grow our vegetables and fruits,” she said.
Chatata appealed on Government to come up with policies to support HOFACOL’s commercialization of the primary and secondary fruit and vegetable sectors.
Currently, HOFACOL has a membership of 40, mainly drawn from Lilongwe, but the membership is open to all growers nationwide.