Botswana Horticultural Market eases life for farmers
Marekisetso a morogo wa rona (PTY) Ltd, better known as Botswana Horticultural Market (BHM) will introduce another business model in an effort to improve the market for horticultural farmers in Botswana.
During a meeting with stakeholders at Denman in Sebele on Friday, November 21, the acting BHM CEO Mr Simon Meti said change of business model came as a result of relevant studies that were undertaken. BHM has since decided to change their business model from commission to wholesale trade.
The farmers he said were complaining that the commission charged at 12.5 per cent coupled with the mandatory 12 per cent VAT scared farmers away from BHM.
He further said farmers were being manipulated by traders including the fact that they were also not paid for their produce immediately upon delivery.
Meti said with the new model, farmers would not have to take risk in case their product get rotten and discarded because the loss will remain with BHM instead.
However he said as a company jointly owned by the ministry of Agriculture through Botswana Horticultural Council (BHC) and Botswana Development Corporation (BDC), they were failing to raise enough money to sustain themselves.
He said they were formed as part of the broader government initiative of boosting local horticultural production, food security, economic diversification and citizen e mpowerment but they needed support from Batswana as a large.
He specifically singled out government institutions to provide support through purchasing of local produce.
Also at the meeting was the chairperson of BHC Mr Boikaego Phole who edged everyone to be proud of local products.
“The market belongs to all of us, therefore we must all participate and get involved because the horticultural market serves all of us,” he said.
He said the producer and consumer should work together to improve the quality of products from Botswana.
The new model which be introduced by BHC entails purchasing produce from local producer markets according to agreeable terms.
The new model is expected to create a conductive and inclusive trading environment that protects farmers in terms of market access, fair price for buyers and reduced barriers of entry for small traders. It is expected to be launched next year in February. ENDS
Source : BOPA
Author : Mompati Tlhankane
Location : GABORONE
Event : Business stakeholder's meeting
Date : Nov 23 Sun,2014
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