President Edgar Lungu has flagged off the harvesting season for maize and soya beans at the Green 2000 Agriculture Project in Kawambwa district in Luapula province.
The President has since expressed happiness about the successes scored so far at the agriculture project saying government’s strategies on agriculture are the enabling factors for this achievement.
President Lungu has also assured that Zambia was on course to becoming fully food secure and serve as a food basket for the region.
“The location of Zambia is such that Zambia can feed the entire region of Africa and beyond,” he said adding that, “…so we believe that with the endowment that we have of adequate water, sunshine and all other aspects, we can produce enough to feed ourselves and the entire region”.
The President also said Zambia is food secure and that the economic security of the people in the country is guaranteed in farming.
“We look forward to a time when farming will take over from mining and other economic activities. But it can only work if we work hard and apply ourselves,” the head of state advised.
And Green 2000 General Manager Dawid Durandt, said 2000 local farmers have been empowered through the out-grower component of the four dimension project that has taken into account training, financial empowerment for local farmers and community engagement.
“The concept that we have constructed here consists of four modules including the agricultural services and training centre, the community production unit, this agricultural project whose harvest we are flagging off now and the open irrigation system,” Mr. Durandt said.
The project has also supported the replication of the agricultural technology used by the Israeli experts who run the project.
The replication is done in schools and other parts of the country.
“We have the Edukit, under which we give a small grant to the schools which they use to put up drip irrigation systems,” he explained.
The Green 2000 agriculture project, which sits on 2,600 hectares of farmland in Luena farm block, has provided formal and informal employment to over 400 people and benefits 2,000 out-grower farmers.