Produce buyer, Care Agro Investment has partnered with Lilongwe-based Agricos, to enter into contract with farmers so that there is a ready market for their produce, especially beans.
The company said contractual agreements with farmers will be for the production of red kidney beans and red speckled beans.
Care Agro Investment is looking for over 10 000 metric tons (MT) of red kidney and red speckled beans and is willing to provide extension services to farmers to enable them produce high quality beans and boost production of the crop.
Managing director for Care Agro Investment Imran Khan, told Business News that farmers under contract will get about 50 percent upfront while the remaining amount shall be paid within seven days of delivery.
Said Khan: “We want to supply the international market and we are promising that farmers shall be paid part payment on delivery and the remainder within seven days.
“There is no way we can move all the produce out of the country within seven days so farmers can take it that we are not here to steal from any one.”
He explained that the company wants 5 000MT of red kidney beans and 5 000MT of red speckled beans due to high demand for the two commodities.
“We are also looking for soya in the region of 10 metric tons, maize 10 metric tons, chick peas 2-3 metric tons and pigeon peas of about 5 000 metric tons.”
He said farmers growing these produce need not be on contract with Care Agro Investment or Agricos to supply.
Agricos, Justin Kaliwo, said currently one of the challenges farmers in the country face is delayed payment once their produce has been sold to buyers.
“That’s why we are negotiating for the farmers to get atleast 50 percent of sales in this particular deal with Care Agro Investment Ltd.
“Farmers should not be afraid of being duped by entering into contract because Agricos is well established company in the country which has been working with farmers especially in high value horticultural crops production where it provides the farmers with extension services, inputs and market linkages,” he said.
Kaliwo further said farmers have an option of selling their produce on Agricos platform or seek their own market depending on the type of contract they enter with Agricos.
“We are looking for a total of 8 000 hectares in this particular arrangement and so far we have gotten 4 000 hectares.
“We are confident that we are going to get the hectarage we are looking for based on the response we have received from the farmers so far,” he said.
According to Khan, Care Agro Investment Ltd have orders from India, Pakistan and Dubai for the beans.