|| AFGRI’s Zambian subsidiary (AFGRI Corporation
Limited) partnered with John Deere, USAID Profit
and the Conservation Farming Unit to launch
its Smallholder Mechanisation Programme. The
programme will lease machinery, including tractors
and trailers, having a value of $4,5 million to
150 farmers over the next three years. Potential
farmers are vetted by the Commercial Farmers
Union. The successful farmers will also receive
business and management training and assistance
in the development of business plans.
Beneficiaries of the programme will provide contract
farming services to a further 80 farmers each,
making advanced mechanised farming methods
available to an estimated 12 000 farmers. This
project is aimed at increasing the percentage of
arable land farmed in Zambia from the current 40%.
The first 36 tractors were delivered in July 2011.