After a 10-year break, Machinga Agricultural Development Division (ADD) has revived agriculture shows which, authorities say, have been designed to give an opportunity to farmers to learn from each other.
Machinga ADD Deputy Programme Manager, Allan Kaliwo, said the shows were stopped 10 years ago after government and other stakeholders noticed that the activities were not bearing the desired fruits.
But Kaliwo said government has consulted widely and has decided to reintroduce the shows with some additional elements which will provide an opportunity for farmers and extension workers to interact and exchange knowledge.
Kaliwo spoke in Mangochi at Nkumba Ground, Traditional Authority Bwananyambi, where the Mangochi District Agriculture Office held this year’s agriculture show.
He said that the Ministry of Agriculture has engaged partners in the sector to come up with means that can ensure that farmers are gaining a lot from the shows.
“The partners will also be helping in resource mobilisation because the shows are also meant to motivate farmers to start taking farming as a commercial activity since most of our subsistence farmers have no other formal employment,” he said.
During the show farmers carted home prizes that ranged from bicycles, wheelbarrows, bags of fertiliser, seeds, chemicals to other farm implements amounting to K1.4 million.
Mangochi District Agriculture Development Officer, Owen Kumwenda, expressed satisfaction with the quality and nature of farm produce which the farmers displayed.
“The show has managed to give us a picture of how our farmers are doing in their respective areas. We are happy that some farmers today managed to display more than four crops, meaning that they are able to appreciate the importance of diversification which is key to improved eating habits,” Kumwenda said.
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