In a bid to mitigate, abate and placate effects of climate change, Alliance One International, is encouraging farmers to use live barns dubbed Zigafa zamoyo, in curing of the green gold -tobacco.
Speaking in Dowa at Mpale Estate, during a tree planting exercise, Alliance One Managing Director, Hugh Saunders, encouraged farmers to use live barn so that farmers cannot be cutting down trees to use in curing tobacco.
“Every year the farmer has to elect the shades for curing so the live barn is there for a life it is not there for period that is why we are encouraging our farmers to use this type of shades,” said Saunders.
In Chigafa Chamoyo, farmers are encouraged to plant Molinga, Cassius, and other varieties of trees in line where after the trees are grown up Chigafa is elected for use.
The MD said he was happy to report that Alliance One is committed in waging war against climate change by among other measures planting more trees.
“There is massive need within the country for massive reforestation and our plea is that greater attention is given to protecting water catchments nationally in a similar way that we guard our graveyards by ensuring trees are planted and the areas are protected,” said Saunders.
Saunders disclosed that Alliance One has planted 7,332, 500 tree seedlings on 2, 465 hectares on government plantations, Alliance once commercial farms and in small holder farms.
“From 2011 to date a total of 25,838,269 trees have been planted on 9,765 hectares with more than 85 Percent survival and the figures have been audited by independent assessors on annual basis,” said Saunders.
Commenting on the Chigafa Chamoyo project, Tobacco Control Commission (TCC) Chief Executive Officer, Dr Albert Changaya, commended Alliance One for promoting the use of the live barn in curing tobacco.
Changaya said the project will go a long way in reducing deforestation in the country.
“Deforestation remains a big problem in the Tobacco industry but with the coming of live barn technology deforestation will be the issue of the past,” said Changaya.
Meanwhile, Tobacco Association of Malawi (TAMA) President, Ruben Maigwa, says media should play critical role in sensitizing the general public on the importance of reforestation and the use of
As a long term solution Saunders is urging Malawians to slow down in producing babies saying the impact of high population is high on forestry.
“As of 1 January 2016, the population of Malawi was estimated to be 17, 738, 638 people. This is an increase of 2,76 % compared to population 17, 261, 736 the year before, these statistics clearly
reflect an urgent need to manage population increases in order to create more viable and sustainable reforestation in the country,” said Saunders.