Thursday, 21 September 2023


FAO responds to Covid-19 fight in Phalombe

By Sam Majamanda

Phalombe, February 18, Mana: United Nations' Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) on Wednesday observed that the impact of the Covid-19 which has not spared farmers in  Malawi, threatens food production.

Coordination Officer for Kulima Project at FAO, Noella Kamwendo made the remarks when the organisation supported 2430 farming households from 82 farmer field schools with 10 048 bars of soap meant for prevention of further spread of the disease.

Kamwendo said the donation of soap was one way of promoting hand washing among the beneficiaries during their farming activities, which is one of the preventive measures against the spread of Covid-19.

“We realized that while people are responding to preventive measures of Covid-19, the farming community is not being considered in a special way, despite the fact that they are the producers of the food that we all rely on. As such we decided to reach out to them," she said.

Prior to the 2020/21 farming season, FAO also provided the farmers with fertilizer as a way of mitigating the impact of Covid-19 on their production capacity.

From the package, individual households went away with four bars of soap each weighing a kilogram while the farmer field school grouping received 328 bars.

One of the beneficiaries, Lyson Muhammad from Zasintha Farmer Field School hailed FAO for considering the farmers’ groups who in most cases were not specifically targeted with Covid-19 interventions.

Agribusiness Officer for Phalombe District Agriculture Development Office, Joseph Biforo said the intervention was one of its kind and that it signified the magnitude of Covid-19 as a cross-cutting issue.

However, Biforo asked other development partners to emulate the example set by FAO, saying with such tailor-made interventions the country could easily win the fight against the pandemic.

FAO is implementing an agricultural related project called Kulima with financial support from the European Union in collaboration with Malawi Government.

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