MAPUTO, Mozambique: May 31, 2022 – Former Tanzania President and Board member of AGRA, H.E. Jakaya Kikwete, has just completed a week-long tour of Mozambique. He met with the country’s President Filipe Jacinto Nyusi and other leaders for high-level discussions on the state of the agriculture sector in the country.
The visit was planned to assess AGRA’s progress with its partners in Mozambique in support of smallholder farmers. AGRA supported Mozambique through 34 grants worth $16.5 million that have been invested under the Partnership for Inclusive Agriculture Transformation in Africa (PIATA).
H.E. Kikwete, who was accompanied by AGRA’s Vice President of Program Innovation and Delivery, Aggie Konde, also used the time to engage with the organization’s partners, policymakers and smallholder farmers to identify the priority areas for Mozambique’s food system transformation.
The AGRA mission met H.E. President Nyusi in Pemba May 26, before seeking audience with vice ministers Dr. Olegario Banze of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, and Dr. Manuel Goncalves of the Ministry Foreign Affairs and Cooperation two days later.
On May 24, the mission travelled to Manica province, where they met with the Provincial State Secretary Edson Macuacua, and Manica Governor Francisca Tomas before proceeding the following day to inspect AGRA projects in part of the Beira development corridor as highlighted below:
In Manica, the mission visited AGRA consortia interventions implemented by KUGULISSA, one of the five AGRA-funded consortia in the country. AGRA consortia investments in Mozambique have, so far, directly benefited 844,446 smallholder farmers, who have collectively sold 488,822 MT of produce through structured markets and earned about US$111.7 million. Through these interventions, 87 Hub Agro-dealers were supported in selling 18,377 Metric Tons of inputs through a network of 1,303 agro-dealers, dealing with both input and output markets. This contributed to a reduction in the distance that farmers walk to access inputs from 20km-30km to 5-7km.
In Gondola, the mission visited an agro-dealer shop and warehouse owned by an SME and AGRA Implementing Partner, LUTEARI, which operates as distributor of seeds, fertilizers, crop protection products, and other agriculture tools and implements, and a buyer of smallholder farmers produce. Afterwards, H.E. Kikwete visited the Community of Mudima in the administrative post of Cafume, where he interacted with smallholder farmers served by Lidia Caução, owner and manager of a local farmers service, local authorities including community leaders, and state representatives.
On the same day, the mission visited the Phoenix Seed company in the Vanduzi district. Phoenix has been supported by AGRA to produce maize and soyabean seed on its own farm, and more through out-growers. Phoenix supports smallholder farmers with seed, and technical assistance to ensure that the quality standards are maintained. It then buys the seed produced for processing and onward distribution to seed outlets. The company produces seed throughout the year as it owns irrigation infrastructure that is critical for seed production. At the firm, the mission interacted with a group of seed out-growers supported by the company, with AGRA’s support, fulfilling AGRA’s objective of working in partnership with the private sector to engage small holder farmers in agricultural value chains.
Following discussions with development partners, the team called on Celso Correia, the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development (MADER) who committed to engaging with AGRA on its stakeholder consultations for its upcoming strategy. He further challenged AGRA to host the AGRF in Mozambique in 2025.