The Agriculture Commodity Exchange rolled out the ACE Marketing School in February 2017, with the help of GIZ. The ACE Marketing School aims at equipping farmers with skills and knowledge on structured markets, and is implemented by the ACE rural Marketing Advisors who were fully trained to successfully conduct these trainings. In September, ACE Marketing School trainings were conducted in several Ntchisi, Kasungu and Mchinji. In Mchinji, it was Mwati, Chiwoko and Nkhunguyembe Cooperatives benefitting from the two full day trainings.
Speaking after the training, the Chair for Mwati cooperative Mr. Ignasio Chisale thanked ACE for empowering Mwati farmers with relevant skills and knowledge on structured markets. At first farmers were not willing to aggregate commodities due to lack of detailed information on structured markets. Thanks to ACE, they have now understood the profits which can be made through aggregation of commodity, or by storing commodity at ACE certified warehouses and waiting for the right time to sell.
“The training was well organised and delivered; it targeted the right beneficiaries and came at the right time when the price of commodities is so crucial for any farmer. We took part in every stage of the training from preparations to delivery. We were able to make suggestions, participate in role plays, group work, etc. The use of energisers also made the training sessions more enticing as it made every participant active” Said Mr. Bornifacio Chibonyore of Chioko Cooperative after the training.
In her closing remarks, Mrs. Leah Chunga, the Assistant Agriculture Extension and Development Coordinator (AAEDC) for Nkanda Extension Planning Area (E.P.A) said “the first AMS training ACE conducted here at Nkhunguyembe Cooperative benefited the Cooperative so much in that it has led to an increase in the volume of commodities deposited at the warehouse. The warehouse is now full and people are unable to deposit as there is no space in the warehouse. We hope the training will be conducted again soon in order to increase the number of farmers with a good understanding of structured markets.
In conclusion the trainings were successful and farmers gained a better understanding of structured markets. They were assessed on every module of the training and given a chance to present what they learnt at the end of the training. Certificates were given to all graduating participants.
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