Tuesday, December 19 2017 | NEW ERA 15 Planting on hold as the rains stay away Staff Reporter Windhoek It is a wait-and-see game in the Maize Triangle, the country’s staple diet breadbasket with virtually a dry November and a rainless season, as was predicted by the Namibian Agronomic Board (NAB) An exceptional decline in white maze production in Namibia’s dry-land drought, was replaced with optimism Producers Association (NPA), Gernot panic yet but the delay will sow doubt amongst producers as they have experienced great losses over the past Wait-and-see…Producers are now pinning their hopes on good rains after Christmas and into the new year to reach the expected total harvest goal of some 68,800 tonnes of white maize. Photo: Contributed insurance companies are not prepared the NAB, Antoinette Venter, is nevertheless optimistic about a rather Maize consumption in the animal by almost 2% per annum over the ten-year period between 2017 and cash-strapped consumers switch to the in the medium term, as income growth due to substitution into alternative Namibia’s 2015 and 2016 maize experienced total crop losses as a result communal area (Zambezi, Kavango East and Kavango West regions) 2% in 2016, but is 62% below the harvest prospects in the commercial 2% higher than in 2015 but is 35% Mahangu (pearl millet) production production showed a negative outlook with its harvest expected to drop by 68% below average, and 17% lower based on the good crop germinations reported in Omusati, Oshikoto, Ohangwena, Kavango East and Intentions to plant were lower than previous years as local producers have been exposed to adverse droughts the ability to be exposed to such risks again, says Namib Mills and Namib A weak overall harvest will translate into Namibia having to Kae MaÞunÿu-Tjiparuro Windhoek F which they needed to drive to access opened business to the public last is growing at a tremendous pace, and saw both an opportunity and a market at the same time,” says Beau a while and did not succeed mostly This also taught me a very valuable matter how hard you try, as long as you keep doing the same things don’t production in the Omaheke Region, one cannot see how and where the communal settlements,” Kauta “The idea was to bring a solution closer to the community as the nearest Otjinene gets fodder shop I saw it as an opportunity since our business would be complementary and solution-driven,” he adds, indicating there is more to the venture would now be able to buy their have to always load it to maximum capacity and the distance travelled! Karive Feed, as the shop has around the region, and we intend to expand by starting to have our own is a unique service and it will be done knowledge, especially regarding the Additionally, Karive Feed will hold annual sessions, at least twice a year, in partnership associations to teach and highlight the various “This would be which I believe would add value to the community,” promises arrangements with both Also through the s u g g e s t i o n b o o k available at the counter encouraged to make also order a minimum quantity that will be delivered within a shop envisages mixing its own products that are direct solutions to “I am also testing a Karive Feed is also planning to Photo: Contributed Look again… The Beetal Makhi Cheeni goat breed of Pakistan and India can easily reach 1.4 metres in height and weigh up to 180 kg. They are excellent milk producers and can deliver four litres of milk on a voluntary intake. Their skins are of very good quality for making leather goods, popular in India and Pakistan. The Beetal goat is very adaptable to different climatic conditions and also suitable for stall feed systems.
16 FARMERS Tuesday, December 19 2017 | NEW ERA Nutri Feeds has enough supply of phosphate licks Communal farmers urged to spend time Lick it up… Cattle licking fodder. Nutri Feeds Namibia has assured livestock farmers that it has enough phosphate summer licks available for at least the next three months. Photo: Contributed Staff Reporter Windhoek Nutri Feeds Namibia is guaranteeing enough phosphate licks for at least the next three months without increased prices. Its relief programme comes when other suppliers of phosphate licks are unable to meet the demand due to a serious shortage of raw material for production by exporters in South Africa. Nutri Feeds Namibia technical advisor, Dean van Dyk, says the shortage of raw material for production of phosphate summer licks comes at a critical time, as livestock now need such supplements to pull them through the hot months. “It became known last week that other suppliers will only be able to deliver phosphate summer licks by January due to a critical shortage of raw material. Nutri Feeds was well aware of the unfolding situation and has ensured enough volumes of raw material to guarantee the availability of phosphate licks for at least the next three months,” he notes. He says the Nutri Lick Phosphate range ensures optimal intake and absorption of phosphate and perfectly balanced levels of calcium, trace-minerals and protein. This product is perfect for supplementing seasonal and in natural grazing. “You simply can’t afford to compromise your business by using inferior supplements, or short-term solutions. We offer the farmer Nutri Lick Fos 6, which offers enough calcium and phosphate and all necessary trace elements.” For more information on Nutri Feeds and all its products, Van Dyk can be contacted at 081 487 3389. Nuusita Ashipala Ongwediva Popular Democratic Movement (PDM) regional coordinator for the Ohangwena region, Hidipo Hamata, is calling upon communal farmers Hamata’s call comes ahead of the ploughing season, which is Although decrease in rainfall has been recorded over the last few years leading to poor harvests, Hamata reckons idleness has also contributed immensely to the poor harvests. He says there is need for a radical mind shift for society to inculcate a culture of producing enough produce for dry spells rather than awaiting government handouts. “As a movement that believes in agriculture, we are calling upon our and be less dependent on government food relief handouts,” says Hamata. poverty and hunger. Apart from saving for the dry spells, Hamata adds that communal farmers should further produce enough to sell and generate income for improved quality of life through improved diet and nutrition. He further calls on the government to continue providing fertilisers and tractor services at a subsidised rate. The government, through the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and providing fertilisers and tractor services to communal farmers. Permanent Secretary Percy Misika says the ministry has allocated another N million for the current crop production season. It spends about N million yearly in subsidising communal farmers. Recently, New Era wrote that with the delay in rains this far, communal farmers are likely to experience a low-rainfall come June next year. Although the ploughing season usually kicks off between rainfall has not been recorded. Staff Reporter Windhoek The way in which people and organisations interact with the food chain is undergoing a profound shift. It is essential, therefore, that farmers understand that they are a link in a much larger series of activities product that leaves the farm. These are the sentiments of Standard Bank’s head of Agribusiness, Gerhard Mukuahima. “The ultimate pay off of the value chain should be agriculture-fordevelopment. It is a natural but, so far, unexploited cycle that starts with the farmer through primary production again, along with everyone else in the country,” he adds. Agriculture remains a strategic sector, as it supports over 70 percent of the Namibian population and employs about a third of the working force. The importance of the sector in addressing food security and livelihood is acknowledged. Sustained efforts have continued to move the country from an exporter of live animals to an exporter of value-added agricultural goods. Other aspects of agriculture have evolved in the direction of sustainable development but the potential within the agricultural value chain has yet to be fully explored. “This is beginning to change and Farmers need to understand value of the agricultural chain need to take the trouble to understand how the chain works now as well as the ways in which it will evolve,” Mukuahima stresses. Banks have always taken a riskaverse approach to the range of variables involved in agricultural operations, the unpredictability of the impact of weather on primary result, the need for industry players to access finance, secure sales, procure products, reduce risk, and conservative means that are either internal or external to the value chain. Internal mechanisms involve players in the form of an input provider offering a farmer terms or a lead intermediary. External mechanisms take the form of loans and insurance products from banks. “Both the internal and external options address value chain needs in a fragmented and sporadic way and tend to be exclusive of smaller or inexperienced operators. Certainly, they don’t meet the needs of the Gerhard Mukuahima modern agricultural value chain,” Mukuahima says. Responding to changes in consumer expectations and environmental and human rights concerns, the agro-food sector is moving to models of production and marketing based on demand rather than on producer-defined agricultural goods. The sector is also adapting to a global, liberalised, and compartmentalised marketplace with little seasonality and high product diversity. Food safety and traceability requirements and higher quality standards coupled with the enforcement of basic environmental regulations are driving new operational approaches. In addition, there is an accelerating concentration of control in the sector with globalisation, economies of scale, and ever increasing vertical and horizontal integration enabling multinational and other interconnected agribusinesses to dominate. “As usual, opportunity is built into change,” says Mukuahima. T h e c o h e r e n c e a n d interdependence of the value chains help consolidate value chain linkages among participants in the chain.” “Standard Bank approaches of a deep, accurate understanding of who the players and where the products and services strengthening the chain. Finance can be tailored structured to support new entrants and reduce the risk for smaller players of getting into their value chains. Financial transaction costs can be reduced through direct discount repayments and delivery services. Value chain linkages and knowledge of the chain can also be used to mitigate risks within the chain, including those arising from participants themselves. Ideally, however, farmers should not be dependent on other players in the value chain, including the bank, to help them exploit the opportunities that are inherent in the chain’s evolution. “This does not mean that farmers specialists. It does mean staying aware of opportunities and requiring your industry body to keep you up to date on the implications of shifts in the chain,” says Mukuahima, adding that rather they should aim at using the value chain for their own development, knowing that if they develop, so will the value chain. Ultimately they become more sustainable and turn agriculture into a vehicle for real transformation. institutions should be using the industry’s value chains to better manage risk for players and increase food security for everyone.