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Advanced supply chain can benefit marginal growers

  • Published at 11:38 pm March 9th, 2017
  • Last updated at 11:39 pm March 9th, 2017
Advanced supply chain can benefit marginal growers
Innovations in value and supply chain are the order of the day to connect between farmers and traders and ensure a better price to the growers. Such innovations can build a strong linkage between the two parties and create a win-win for everyone. Development partners, business people and several NGOs came up with the observation at a discussion held on Thursday to mark the Market Development Forum Day 2017 in the capital. They advocated for a modern supply-chain management system that can empower women through their participation in economic activities as well. In his address, Shaheen Khan, chief executive officer at Gemcon Food and Agricultural Products Ltd, said the Market Development Forum can play a pivotal role in direct sourcing of products from the farmers. “We have success in connecting with the farmers at grass-roots level. Gemcon is working with such farmers at Manikganj through Kazi Shahid foundation.” To share his experience, Shahid adds that they have found a huge knowledge gap among the farmers when it comes to growing products in an organic way and packaging and marketing them rightly. Due to lack of post-harvest knowledge, farmers waste 30% of their products. The CEO calls for proper training to the farmers that will prevent post-harvest damage. “We are providing training on how to produce organic fertiliser and we source vegetables and other agriculture products from them directly,” he added. Rahim Afrooz Director Niaz Rahim said vegetable suppliers are very marginal people who do not have an access to finance. “Financiers do not want to provide funds but we are trying to make them skilled through initiatives.” Rahim suggests that Non-Government Organisations (NGOs) and development partners should be incorporated in the supply chain initiative as they are engaged in the field-level work. “We have to demonstrate a market collaborative attitude to get quality products,” he added. Through Local Service Provider (LSP) system many are contributing to economy as well. Ador Ali, a LPS collector from Jamalpur, explained how he benefited from the innovation in value and supply chain. “I used to collect agricultural products going from door to door and sell them at between Tk10 and Tk12 to a middleman who sold at Tk25 per kg.” By the time, LSP system came in, the same products were being sold in Dhaka at Tk25 per kg, said Ali. “Since I kept selling products at high price, I started buying them at Tk15 per kg from the growers who ultimately reaped more financial benefit,” he added. Director of Woman Empowerment Center of CARE Bangladesh, Humaira Aziz described the economic empowerment of women as a contributory factor to inclusive growth process.