In line with achieving its objectives, the project introduced a new, improved black bean variety to smallholders in 2019. The new variety is economically profitable compared to the brown bean variety already produced in the region. A recent partnership between the project and Klein Karoo, seed company and input supplier, is currently being implemented to improve the producer’s sales and marketing.
On 12th July 2020, the AFOC-MSD project organised a market day where the producers debuted their first harvest of black beans. This was a great marketing opportunity for many who gave testimonials of better yields and consequently, satisfactory returns as a result of using the improved farming techniques and market linkages.
"I am very grateful to Swisscontact who have worked hard to introduce improved varieties and increased our access to market. We began cultivating black beans in 2019, and we now see how profitable it is. The market day has brought in many buyers who are purchasing black beans at a good price. We never imagined we could sell beans at CHF 1/kg. We are hopeful the price will remain favourable,” commented Mr. Fide Carlos Chairose, Producer and President of the Chikwidze Association.
Mrs. Rudo Gama, a producer in Rutanda and member of the Nhararai Muone Association, thanks AFOC-MSD for the intervention and for supplying her with the new black bean variety. “This bean has helped us a lot. Besides being tasty, its harvest is also profitable. We will continue to produce a lot. Today we are at a market with black bean buyers. Swisscontact through the AFOC-MSD project continues to help us in this way".
On the other hand, Mrs. Africa João, a member of the Badz Rotanda Association, added, "I learnt a lot from the good practice training on black bean production which helped me achieve good yields and reduce my post-harvest losses. Today, I have measured my produce, and I am pleased. If things continue this way, I'll feel very fulfilled and will use all my energy to continue producing more beans because the market already exists and offers good prices.”
The Sussundenga District has faced several natural disasters, including floods and cyclones. The FAR programme introduced the incorporation of vegetables and cereals to address food security in the face of climate change. AFOC-MSD is one of the six implementing organisations working with the FAR Programme to strengthen the position of farmers in the value chains while providing technical assistance where needed as well as access to structured markets. FAR is a Swedish Embassy funded programme that is currently implemented in Manica and Sofala Provinces.