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Collective storage and Marketing of Rice: A case of Domasi Rice Association, Machinga

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Paddy ready to be processed at Domasi Association Super Rice Mill

The case of Domasi Irrigation Rice Association has in-depth intensification of imperativeness of collective marketing. At first, rice farmers used to sell rice individually which led to minimization of returns as there was no bargaining and negotiation skills. In 2016/2017 growing season, the Rice Platform under AICC, strengthened the association with marketing skills which were biased towards selling collectively. The collective marketing concept was embedded in the constitution so that all members comply accordingly. The marketing committee and the whole association were trained in producer groups and other actors in value-chain and business development practices, group dynamics, financial management, conflict management and approaches in group marketing.

To its credit, Domasi Rice Association has 155 tons of rice stored in the warehouse ready for potential markets and milling plant for processing paddy. About 24 metric tons has been polished and sold collectively to potential buyers at K400 per Kg. The association made about K22 million from the sell. This has been shared amongst the members for various households needs and buying of shares in the Village Savings and Loans groups which also introduced by AICC  as one innovation within the Malawi Agriculture Partnership-Phase 2 program.

At first, fellow farmers didn’t see the goodness of collective marketing with a business eye. They thought it was about wasting time, hence in some cases; buyers would come to buy from us some months after harvesting. Through negotiation meetings and transparency in bargaining for prices with buyers, members are able to sell at a good price and their life needs are being met,” said Anderson Chapita, Chairperson, Domasi Rice Association, Machinga.

Domasi Irrigation Rice Scheme lies along the Domasi River in Machinga. In total, there are 2057 farmers (957 females and 1100 males) and a total cultivated land of 462 Hectares. Apart from Kilombero and Supa Faya type of rice, Domasi also produce Kayanjamalo, TCG 10, Pusa and Mtupatupa.

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