NEXT GENERATION MALAWI MISSION 2014 PHALOMBE DISTRICT AGRICULTURE SHOW REPORT

NEXT GENERATION MALAWI MISSION 2014 PHALOMBE DISTRICT AGRICULTURE SHOW REPORT

The Next Generation Malawi Mission 2014 delegates arrived in country on 9th June, 2014 to 22nd June, 2014. The mission had a purpose of educating the smallholder farmers and share experiences and knowledge in agriculture issues with young agriculturalists. So being one of the young agriculturalist who attended the mission I would like to report what happen during the mission at the agriculture show which the Phalombe District Office hosted.

It was the 17th June, 2014 when the district received delegates for Next Generation Malawi Mission 2014 in preparation for agriculture show. After the arrival of the delegates they were greeted by Phalombe District Agriculture Development Officer Mr O. Chapotoka and Joseph Before, soon after they delegates had a discussion with the Extension staff to learn more about what the district is doing about agriculture issues and how they conduct the agriculture shows. There the delegates shared their experiences on how they conduct their shows in the countries they were coming from since it was a learning and sharing information process to both delegates and the extension staff of Phalombe district. Then the delegates and the extension staff proceed to the agriculture show site just to see and appreciate what the district had done in preparation for the show with the resources it managed to have.

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This photo shows delegates sharing ideas after touring the show site. Emily Craven, Maurice Mantchombe, Joseph Before and Innocent Kaponya the Agriculture Extension Development Coordinator for Nkhulambe Extension Planning Area where the show took place.

On 18th June, 2014, the day of the show all activities started at around 6 o’clock in the morning with registration of exhibits that farmers brought to the show. When the time was 8am registration was closed and judges of the exhibits were grouped to start the process of judging. The judges were all extension staff from agriculture and non-governmental organizations working together with the Phalombe District Agriculture Office towards food security.

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Photo showing Ashley and Emily plus district livestock officer judging livestocks.

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Some of the exhibits that farmers brought at the day of exhibition. Groundnuts part of Legumes section

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Shelled maize after being judged.

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Cassava and cocoa yarms being displayed at the show.

When the judges were through with judging it was time for giving prizes to the winners. The highest prizes was a bicycle went to a farmer who brought a well managed goat that was under livestock, another bicycle went also to a farmer who brought compost manure since we are encouraging manure making as one way of improving soil fertility because inorganic fertilizers are expensive to buy.
The photo below shows delegates during prize presentations and in their hands are ribbons presented to winners during the show.

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LESSONS LEARNT FROM THE MISSION

  • It was my first time to standards to look for when judging.
  • Quality was also a priority which was not the case in the previous years the district has been conducting the show.
  • I also learnt that stakeholders should be taking a leading role in such agriculture shows which was not the case with us where only district agriculture offices are responsible for organization of the show.

Lastly, would like to thank the Next Generation Mission Facilitator Leona Dargis for making sure that the Mission to place in Malawi and her efforts in the agriculture show not forgetting the entire delegates for the knowledge and experiences you shared with us. Through your visit I have learnt a lot that will help me in conducting my duties when working with rural farmers. It is my hope that Next Generation Mission will take place again in Malawi. I also thank for the materials you brought such as ribbons that were given to winners it was unique as it has never happened in history of agriculture shows in Malawi.

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“AGRICULTURE IS FOR ALL, THROUGH COLLABORATION WE CAN ACHIEVE MORE IN AGRICULTURE IN OUR COUNTRIES AND THE WORLD AS A WHOLE”

Yours Faithfully,

Joseph Timothy Before

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