On the 5th of April, the World Food Programme (WFP), together with the General Representation of the Government of Flanders in Southern Africa, handed over six certified warehouses to Smallholder Farmer Cooperatives in Lilongwe, Malawi.
During the handover ceremony, Deputy General Representative of the Government of Flanders, Nikolas Bosscher highlighted his hopes for the cooperatives in making sure this programme is a success. "I expect that the smallholder farmers devise a good business plan, and have a very good organisation structure to make sure that the cooperatives are governed well and this management will include proper management of warehouses," he said.
Bosscher added that the warehouses are aggregation centres that would enable farmers to conduct quality checks and help find good markets for their products. The warehouses will among other things, prevent post-harvest losses as smallholder farmers will have good storage for their harvest.
Minister-president Geert Bourgeois visited the warehouses in 2017 during his 11-day visit to the Flemish partner countries South Africa, Malawi and Mozambique.
Flanders supports several projects in Malawi aiming to provide farmers with a better income, ranging from information on agricultural crops and techniques to land management and marketing of agricultural products.