Cooperative gets a boost in value addition
Mchinji, July 15, Mana: Churches Action in Relief and Development (CARD) and Norwegian Church Aid (NCA) on Wednesday handed over a processing facility worth MK 243 million to Mikonga Cooperative in Kapiri-Mchinji District.
During the handover ceremony held at the processing facility in Kapiri, CARD Executive Director, Melton Luhanga said the facility would assist farmers, especially women and youth, to be economically empowered.
He said the facility, which has oil processing machines, shelling machines, and layers for chicken kraals, will boost the livelihood of not just members of the cooperative, but also the community as a whole.
“As you can see, the facility will provide affordable cooking oil, eggs and provide other opportunities like ready market for farmers around the community," said Luhanga.
In his remarks, Country Director for Norwegian Church Aid, Havard Hovdhaugen, said through the Mikonga processing facility, farmers would be able to make more profits due to value addition which he said was vital in increasing profitability and preventing post-harvest losses.
Hovdhaugen said the aim of the project was to promote sustainable development and build resilience in community structures for social and economic progress, rather than giving handouts which has short-term effects.
According to Tradition Authority Dambe, not only people from Kapiri would benefit from the facility, but also those from other areas like Kasungu.
According to the Manager of Mikonga Cooperative, Master Mtsindula, the cooperative would continue striving for improvement and reach its ultimate goal of being the best in Mchinji.
Mikonga Cooperative has farmers who grow soya beans, sunflower, do poultry farming and process cooking oil among other activities.