By Nicholas Mwale – NAIS
Government has called on investors to invest in Rice production and value addition in Western Province.
Agriculture Minister MICHAEL KATAMBO says it is important to attract investment in the rice industry in Western Province as the region has favourable climatic condition for the crop.
Speaking when he toured Namushakende Farm Institute in Mongu that is producing various rice seed varieties, Mr KATAMBo observed that increased investment in the sector will attract some out-grower scheme where farmers would be empowered to grow the crop.
Mr KATA says increased investment in Rice production and value addition will also help create market linkages for farmers within the region through the formation of bulking centers.
He further says the production of rice seed varieties happening at Namushakende Farm Institute needs to be replicated in other provinces that are into rice production.
And Western Province Agricultural Coordinator ROY LUMAMBA says the province has great potential for rice production due to availability of water in the Zambezi flood plains.
Meanwhile, Namushakende Farm Institute Principal CHAMA MWILA says the institute has this year embarked on production of rice varieties only, and that 10 hectares have so far been planted.