Alliance One Tobacco Malawi Limited on Wednesday donated 50 baling jacks to farmers who grew tobacco using the Integrated Production System (IPS) in the 2016/2017 growing season.
The jacks are valued at $35,000 [approximately K26 million].
Alliance One Malawi Corporate Affairs manager Fran Malila said the donation is part of her company’s labour-saving initiative that aims to help tobacco farmers minimize travelling distances to access such facilities from other centers during tobacco harvesting season.
“The jacks will benefit a total of 500 IPS farmers as direct beneficiaries as well as another estimated 5 000 non-contracted growers across the country. The beneficiaries will include clubs following Alliance,” said Malila.
One International’s recommended sustainable tobacco production mechanisms, key performance indicators such as quality and yield sustainable curing energy initiatives, soil conservation as well as good agricultural labour practices including not using children as source of labour in any tobacco production, among others.”
She said the post-harvest packaging drive also aims to preserve quality, increase efficiency in transportation, marketing and post market processing, among others.
The beneficiaries’ representative Gradson Dzozi commended the company for the donation, saying it will help farmers save money on packaging thereby maximizing their profits.
Dzonzi, who belongs to Tayamba IPS Tobacco Club of Traditional Authority Kalumo in Ntchisi, disclosed that previously, tobacco growers used to spend more than K80 000 each to hire and transport baling jacks.