Agriculture Commodities Exchange for Africa (ACE) has said vendors play an integral part in the agriculture value chain as they offer farmers primary markets for their commodities.
Speaking in Malawi on the sidelines of the launch of ACE Rural Strategy 2020 in the capital Lilongwe on Friday, ACE chief executive officer Kristian Schach Moller said they have been compelled to develop the strategy because the adoption of their services by farmers and small rural enterprises is low despite the benefits.
Said Moller: “Even though there is a perception that vendors are bad in the agriculture value chain, they are important because they play a crucial role in the whole marketing chain by offering farmers ready markets within their areas.
“In fact, we need more vendors because not all farmers can access structured markets.”
ACE links farmers to markets and addresses key gaps in agricultural value chains that prevent farmers from becoming integrated and competitive market actors by providing essential supporting functions to the value chain.
Currently, ACE is working with 50 000 farmers in the country, but with this new strategy the number will rise to one million farmers, according to Moller.
Apart from ACE, Malawi also has AHL Commodities Exchange (AHCX). n