MAIZE CONSORTIUM; THE BRIDGE TO MAIZE VALUE CHAIN KEY ACTORS IN RUVUMA REGION.

In building sustainable operational system  in maize value chain ,  SIDO Ruvuma through MUVI Project have made some initiatives towards the establishment of   Chipole business consortium model dealing with maize products. In this model, the Chipole Maize processing unit will be the lead firm attracting other players to join such as farmers, traders, input suppliers, and financial institutions and BDS providers. To start with, they ensured   maize farmers groups from Kizuka, Magagula, Nakahegwa, Masangu and Lusonga villages in Magagula ward to sell the cultivated 6,000 metric tons of maize in existing market price. Through the assurance of Market for the maize produced, Mbinga Community Bank agreed to finance smooth operations to this consortium players, either being the lead firm, farmers or input suppliers toward unlocking bottlenecks in the value chain development.
For smooth operation of the model, SIDO Ruvuma organized study tour to Raphael Group Limited at Uyole Mbeya for each player to learn practically the way model is operating sustainably. Raphael group and other stakeholders together managed to form Southern Highland Rice Consortium (SHIRCO).The trip helped participant to gain new ideas which will enable to work profitably. Participants discussed  with various stakeholders  of  rice consortium model, knowing role of each player,  their plans, the way challenges are handled and also how  each enjoy and benefit working within the model. During tour participants managed to meet NMB zonal relationship manager Mr Rogers Chipela and he declared the willingness to finance Chipole consortium model players if needs arises.NMB and CRDB are banks that finances the SHIRCO players at Mbeya.
On the side of Input suppliers, they will have market assurance based on trust from association leaders and BDS providers. As a result, the yield per acreage will increase thus affecting the individual as well. Business relations between Processor, banks, SACCOS and smallholder farmers will be strengthened, resulting in more favourable loan terms for agricultural producers as well as low interest rates for commercial loans.
Through model establishment, there is possibility of creating many employment chances in various activities related to the product cultivation, crops processing, warehouse system, product transportation, dusting and security.

To market maize flour produced by  Chipole  processing unit, Raphael Group limited intend to partner with Chipole in product marketing as the company has been advertising maize products (sembe) within and outside the country, while it has not started supplying. The Raphael Group Ltd production Manager will visit Chipole within November 2015 for discussion on trade terms.  The model will have positive impact as each player will expect working to have positive results.