Enacy Mapakame Business Reporter
At least 16 out of 33 registered contractors have complied with the Agricultural Marketing Authority (AMA)’s regulations which require contractors to submit a list of their contracted farmers, copies of contracts, investment and total hectarage contracted.
The 16 contractors are in the categories of grains, oilseeds and horticulture. According to AMA, the remaining 17 contractors have registered but are yet to submit all the required information.
A contractor is a registered buyer who is a party to a grain, oilseed or other approved crop production contract.
Registration of contractors is done in accordance with Statutory Instrument (SI) 140 of 2013, which states that no individual or body may purchase, import or export grain or oilseeds as well as enter into a production contract for grain or oilseeds unless registered with the AMA.
The SI 140 0f 2013 was further strengthened by introduction of SI 274 of 2021 to ensure full compliance in the grains and oilseeds sub-sector.
According to the amendment, contractors are now legally obliged to deliver inputs to farmers they would have contracted in time and ensure the contract includes the minimum of each input as set by AMA.
The amendment to the legal instrument was aimed at specifying the duties of contractors, promoting honesty and fairness as well as criminalising breaches of contract.