A group of South African farmers are targeting to invest R4 billion into the country’s agricultural sector to boost food security and increase the value of farm produce.
The investors brought into the country by Africa Grain and Seed (AGS) , landed in the country recently and met officials from the Zimbabwe Investment and Development Agency to get assistance on modalities required to invest in the country.
Addressing journalists after the meeting, the President of the Black Farmers Association of South Africa Dr. Lennox Mtshagi said they intend to invest in Cannabis Farming, Crop, and Livestock Production through creating partnerships with local farmers and communities.
“We want to invest in the country’s agricultural sector mainly targeting Cannabis, Crop, and Livestock production. We will create partnerships with local farmers and communities, using local resources to boost this sector. We are also going to create a market for farmers for them to be able to take their products out of the country to make money.
“We will use the SADC free trade to enable local farmers to get market-related prices for their produce for them to get value for their products. Our investments will enable local farmers to acquire shares in our businesses so that when we decide to leave, they will remain the owners of the enterprises,” said Dr. Mtshagi.
He said the investment model that they are bringing will work as evidenced by the existing partnerships with about 183 Zimbabwean farmers in South Africa who are part of his association.
“Zimbabwe has a lot of skilled people and our investment will create a lot of employment especially for the youths and the disabled people. We intend to come in as soon as the authorities open the gates for us,” said Mrs. Hazvineyi Chiota
Founder and President of AGS Mr. Anthony Denga said. If we are proactive as Africans we should not wait for circumstances and other people to create perspective-expanding experiences, financially and for our economies. We can consciously create our own, as AGS we intend to see these synergies transform our communities. Then bring about a sustainable way of life in Africa and Zimbabwean people.
One of the investors who is the Executive Director of the Institute for Applied Alchemy Chantel Oppelt said she is excited with the agreements that have been made and are looking forward to investing more than R4 Billion into the agricultural sector.
“We are very excited with our agreement which I think is forward-thinking. In terms of our agreement, we are focusing on food security and poverty alleviation. We are looking forward to surpassing the R4 Billion in terms of investment.,” she said.
The investors will be working in partnership with African Grain and Seed (AGS). In an interview with journalists, the Vice President of AGS Mrs. Zandile Matiwaza – Denga said her organization would like to re-address the perception of youths and women on agriculture so that they embrace it for the country to have food security.
“Agriculture is very important in our economy. We would like youths and women to appreciate it as the only sector that enables the country to have food security. So it’s a matter of how we make these people have ownership of farming,” she said.
AGS works in partnership with KamPay to help farmers to have access to financing and markets to get the maximum value of their produce.
Dr. Chris Cleverly – CEO of Kampay, Group president of Kampay.
“Like tobacco before it, SADC region will be a global leader in growing cannabis and hemp. It is only a matter of time. We want to make sure that this time the smallholder farmers and local entrepreneurs’ benefit as much as the global corporations”
Zandile Matiwaza-Denga Co-founder and Vice president of AGS reiterated the desire of AGS to work in partnership with governments in countries where it operates. To see women and youth inclusion and those that are marginalized being put in the forefront.