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Agribusiness of changing agricultural production cycle of smallholder farmers in rural Mafinga to preserve environment and feed the WORLD.

Our vision is to prosper together with smallholder farmers by changing their agricultural production cycle culture by solar irrigation.

Photo of Chaka Ng'ambi
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Written by

Lead Applicant Organization Name

Muchinga General Enterprises Limited (M.G.E)

Lead Applicant Organization Type

  • Small company (under 50 employees)

Website of Legally Registered Entity

How long have you / your team been working on this Vision?

  • 3-10 years

Lead Applicant: In what city or town are you located?

At Thendele in Mafinga District Muchinga Province

Lead Applicant: In what country are you located?


Your Selected Place: what’s the name of the Place you’re developing a Vision for?

Muchinga Province by starting in Mafinga District where our small office is located. Muchinga has an area of 87806 Square Kilometers.

What country is your selected Place located in?


Describe your relationship to the place you’ve selected.

We selected this place because the name of our enterprise was gotten from this place Muchinga which means in our local Bemba language as " In side the Calabash".A calabash is a vine grown for its fruit, which can either be harvested as fresh to be consumed as a vegetable, or harvested when mature to be dried and used as an utensil. In traditional societies it is often used for preserving precious items like food and water. This Place is very important to us because it has abundant resources like fertile land, underground water and wildlife. We are connected to the Place because our parents were from the place and is where we have a small office and we have a Chiefdom known as Mwenechifungwe and are passionate of working with smallholder farmers in this area because they are loyal and hard working.

Describe the People and Place: Provide information that would be helpful for an outsider who has never been there and may have no context about this Place to better understand the area.

Muchinga Province has several groups of tribes and languages the common being Namwanga, Nyika, Tumbuka, Lambya, Bisalala,Bemba and Fungwe. These languages are not similar. A Namwanga may not understand Nyika or Tumbuka or Fungwe. People in this area are friendly but are very loyal to their natives. Nearly most of the people in the area are smallholder farmers and depend their living on agriculture. There are about seven Districts in Muchinga Province and Two National Game parks where you could see elephants, buffallos , lions and several other types of animals. You need to have a four by four when moving in the game park. Some places like in the Luangwa Valley has high temperatures especially in the month of October. The dominant crops are maize, millet, common beans and rice. The place has great potential for aquaculture in some places though most suitable places are near game parks and poses much risk of wild animals like lions. Most of the people also keep cattle though not on a large scale. Some places are not connected to mobile phone communication and is great challenge for smallholder farmers in such places. From Isoka District going to Mafinga District you will pass through some mountainous places. Some places in the mountains have streams which could be connected by pipes to irrigate the low lands naturally and has nice view scenery and is where we target most of the smallholder farmers to be growing crops by irrigation if empowered with irrigation systems.

What is the estimated population (current 2020) in your Place?


Challenges: Describe the current (2020) and the future (2050) challenges that your food system faces.

The current challenges and future challenges our current food system faces are that smallholder farmers depend their agricultural production on the rain which cannot cope with the fast increasing population because of drought and unreliable rain pattern affected by the climate change. Smallholder farmers in the dry season cut the trees for charcoal for sell to supplement their one off income from seasonal crops which is also accelerating the climate change and causing deserts in some places.Most of the smallholder farmers use hand hoes to cultivate their fields and therefore cannot grow enough crops for food. Most of the crops grown are maize and common beans. For the maize production not all smallholder farmers are able to afford buying quality seeds and fertilizers to have good yield and instead end up recycling the same type of maize which give poor yield. For those near the wetlands manage to grow some rice but do not have enough resources to take the rice after harvest to where they could sell at market price and realize more income as a result end up poor because they cannot afford to take and sell where they could realize high income.

Address the Challenges: Describe how your Vision will address the challenges described in the previous question.

We shall initially distribute maize seed and fertilizers to Five Hundred(500) smallholder farmers as loan. Each farmer is to receive 10kg of maize seed for one hectare and 8bags of 50kg fertilizers four for basal dressing and four for top dressing. The maximum yield per hectare is Two hundred and Eighty (280) fifty kg bags for the maize seed which we shall purchase from seedco and distribute as loan and each farmer shall pay back One hundred and Twenty bags of fifty Kg bags which we shall sell at an estimated $10 per 50Kg of maize to millers so that we continue the program and increase the number of smallholder farmers to have access to seed and fertilizers. Those who fully pay will graduate to be provided a long term loan of solar water pump system for irrigation purpose. Another route would be to use cooperatives which will be provided with inputs together with solar water pump systems for irrigation purpose to mitigate the risk of giving individual loans and in Mafinga District are more than Four Hundred Cooperatives.The distribution model specifically overcome the barrier for the poor also to have access of the inputs to grow the maize to have food security and increased income and reduce poverty. The fundamental part of our organisation is to have strategic seed company and Fertilizer Company from which to purchase the inputs and that our office is strategically located in the rural local area in Mafinga District in Muchinga Province Zambia and the people in this area depend on agriculture for their livelihood but lack access to inputs. The inputs will initially be distributed to Five Hundred smallholder farmers after inspection of where they live and that they have land of one hectare to grow the maize and should know that the inputs distributed to them is a loan which have to be paid in form of the maize they are to harvest and we shall ensure the seed and fertilizers distributed to them is the one which gives yield of 280 of 50kg per hectare with good management and shall only fully pay back the loan for 120 of 50kg bags so that other smallholder farmers should also benefit from the program in subsequent years after we sell these bags to purchase again inputs to distribute to other smallholder farmers. We propose to start the program on 1 November 2020 since the rain starts in November.Expected total yield of maize from 500 smallholder farmers in year one(2021) is 500x280x50kg of maize(corn)=7000000kg=7000mt with the market value of $1,680,000 Note that the price is set at $12 per 50kg bag of maize.Our long term passion and impact vision is to have 12000 poor smallholder farmers in Mafinga District in Muchinga Province Zambia to have access to inputs in the next five years to produce more food for the global increasing population to achieve the food future vision..

High Level Vision: With these challenges addressed, now provide a high level description of how the Place and the lives of its People will be different than they are now.

With the challenges addressed people in Mafinga District in Muchinga Province Zambia will be impacted by our work for rural poor to have access to inputs to grow maize and have food security at house hold level and increased income. Girl children will have access to education because parents will be able to pay school fees from increased income from maize sell and legume crops. Poverty will reduce drastically in Mafinga District as there will be increase in the production of maize and legumes to feed the increasing population. Smallholder farmers will stop to depend on the rain for their agricultural production since they will be provided with solar water pumps for irrigation purpose. The environment will flourish and climate change will drastically be mitigated.

Full Vision: How do you describe your Vision for a regenerative and nourishing food future for your Place and People for 2050?

Our vision is to use innovation of changing the agricultural production cycle of the smallholder farmers especially women in Zambia to feed the world for education and cultural change.3000 smallholder farmers in the rural in Muchinga Province shall be provided with solar water pump systems as long term loans while providing guaranteed market for their cereal and legume crops at the local rural in five years. This will provide solutions for food security for the increasing population, adaptation to drought and develop the culture for having solar water pumps for irrigation by the smallholder farmers in the rural and stop just depending on rain for growing crops. To develop necessary capacity for smallholder farmers to solve new climate change challenges in agriculture, knowledge and skills required to take agriculture as business. To meet current and future agricultural challenges and food security by being able to design business models which will help smallholder farmers in rural areas manage natural resources as well as formulating innovative business plans that work for agribusiness while meeting rural community expectations and all stakeholders. To increase the volume and value of agribusiness based on the output of smallholder farmers in rural area in Mafinga District in Muchinga Province Zambia.The problems we are trying to solve are cutting down of trees for charcoal for sell by smallholder farmers as source of income which is affecting the climate change and shortage of food for the fast increasing population. We shall preserve the Environment by motivating smallholder farmers at the local rural concentrating on farming as source of income unlike cutting down of trees for charcoal for sell by providing them guaranteed market for cereal and legume crops at the local rural in Mafinga District Muchinga Province. The agribusiness vision solution solves the problem by motivating smallholder farmers at the local rural to grow different types of crops throughout the year by the guaranteed market provided at the local rural level and by the use of solar water pump systems for irrigation thereby preserving the environment unlike cutting down of trees for charcoal as source of income. Bulk buyers and processors will know where to get the quality, quantity of crops needed at market price. The solar energy pump systems will be sold to smallholder farmers by providing long term loans by our company in form of solar water pump systems since these same smallholder farmers will be the producers of our other products which are the cereal and legume crops at the local rural to be sold by our company to bulk buyers and processors.The non-cutting of the trees for charcoal for sell will be one of the conditions in the solar water pump loan agreement with the smallholder farmers at the local rural so that they could concentrate on farming of cereal and legume crops which the market will be guaranteed for them at the local rural. This will motivate the smallholder farmers to increase the production of cereal and legume crops which are nutritious. The smallholder farmers will be motivated to concentrate on farming as the source of income because of the guaranteed market at the local rural for the crops they will be growing. In the long run because of the increased income that the rural smallholder farmers will have will start to purchase the solar water pump systems from our company instead of loans and will make it easier for them to pay. All the future generation will develop a culture of having solar water pump system for farming as source of income thereby preserving the trees. The smallholder farmers are our customers for solar water pump systems and at the same time are our producers of cereal and legume crops which we shall be purchasing from them at the local rural and sell to bulk buyers and processors. We have customers at both ends, the smallholder farmers in the rural for solar water pump systems at one end and bulk buyers of cereal and legume crops at the other end. The agribusiness is for the smallholder farmers to be growing cereal and legume crops throughout the year under irrigation to adapt to drought caused by climate change as source of income because of the guaranteed market we shall provide at the local rural in Mafinga District in Muchinga Province Zambia with the aim of discouraging deforestation for charcoal for sell as source of income. By so doing the culture will develop for the rural smallholder farmers and future generation to have solar water pump systems for irrigation which will provide us the market for the solar water pump systems. It could be similar to the way the culture of having a mobile phone for communication has developed.

How did you hear about the Food System Vision Prize?

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Attachments (4)

Muchinga Pitch Deck Template.pptx

Muchinga solution to feed the fast increasing population while preserving the environment.

certificate of incorporation.pdf

Registration certificate of Muchinga General Enterprises Limited (M.G.E)


M.G.E solution for food production as well as preserving the environment.

Chaka 2018TFF Ambassador.pdf

2018 Food For Thought Ambassador because of great passion and unique agribusiness solution to feed 9 Billion people by 2050.


Join the conversation:

Photo of Cortney Ahern

Hi Chaka Ng'ambi  welcome to the Food System Vision Prize Community!

Thank you for submitting your vision for changing agricultural production in Mafinga. It's clear you have deep knowledge of the issues facing this place and potential solutions to create a more sustainable future.

Some questions and suggestions that might help to strengthen your vision:
- It's clear you have a specific solution in mind for this place and this issue in distributing seed and fertilizer loans to smallholder farmers. How does this particular solution scale up into a vision for Zambia's food system in 2050? What would life look like in 2050 if you achieved your solution? How might you evolve your Vision to make it more inclusive and systemic for your local food system and its numerous stakeholders?
- You've focused in fertilizers and seeds as the key issue and potential solution, however in reading your application it's clear that there are so many interconnected issues and opportunities that relate to economics, culture, diet, and environment. There might be room to strengthen those ties to show how this is truly a systemic solution and vision.

I also wanted to make sure that you have seen our Food Vision Prize Toolkit with a lot of information, activities, and guidelines. The Toolkit can help you refine your Vision and make it more systemic, human-centered and well informed for the future. Here is the link to the Prize Toolkit:

Look forward to seeing your Vision evolve through the coming weeks.

Photo of Chaka Ng'ambi

Hi Cortney Ahern, Thank you very much for your observation and questions.This particular solution will scale up into a vision for Zambia's food system in 2050 not to lack nutritious food at household level whether in the rural or urban areas. People will be able to eat what they like unlike being restricted to limited food supply. This means people will be eating foods that they want by 2050 because will be readily available unlike now when they are restricted because could not access the food they want. We shall evolve our Vision to make it more inclusive and systemic for our local food system because we shall involve a lot of stakeholders in our solution from smallholder farmers by learning from them why they grow such foods and why not other foods and learn challenges they face and how we could solve them together. We shall also have strategic partners like governing authorities like Ministry of Agriculture to provide us with information.Our impact Vision is to change agricultural production cycle of smallholder farmers so that they could be growing different types of crops which are nutritious and us providing guaranteed market at the local rural so that they have increased income at household level and nutritious food like common beans, groundnuts, vegetables, fruits, soya beans which could be processed for milk as source of protein. We shall ensure banking facilities using Mobile Phone for transactions are taken to the rural communities for them to increase saving of income from food crop sells to the urban as most people are projected to be in the urban areas by the year 2050. We shall have warehousing centers in the rural where the commodities will be processed and packed in different sizes of packages in order to meet the need the the ultimate consumer of the commodities. The packaging system will include information about nutritional value of the commodities. By the the year 2050 no chemical fertilizers will be used instead organic fertilizers will be used as they will be processed from increased number of livestock such as chicken drops and other livestock manure to be produced in our Vision system cycle to use in the production of crops. Thank you very much and we look forward to realizing our impact food Vision System.