9,000 Meru farmers sign Bidco deal to supply Soya beans

Edible fats and oils manufacturer Bidco Africa has signed a contract with 9,000 small-scale farmers in Meru County for the supply of soya beans.

Friday March 11 2016

A miraa farmer in Meru inspects his crop.

A miraa farmer in Meru inspects his crop. Edible fats and oils manufacturer Bidco Africa has signed a contract with 9,000 small-scale farmers in Meru County for the supply of soya beans and sunflower seeds as it seeks to boost its production. FILE PHOTO | NATIN MEDIA GROUP 

By JAMES KARIUKI
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Edible fats and oils manufacturer Bidco Africa has signed a contract with 9,000 small-scale farmers in Meru County for the supply of soya beans and sunflower seeds as it seeks to boost its production.

Under the terms of the agreement Bidco said it will promptly pay upon delivery the farmers’ produce at competitive prices.

Bidco CEO Vimal Shah described the deal as momentous as it bolstered Bidco’s mission of inclusive growth along the entire oil value chain.

“This is a win-win partnership that will rope in thousands of small scale farmers currently engaged in subsistence farming into the income making bracket. What a small scale farmer needs most is a market and Bidco has guaranteed that, “Shalem Enterprises Managing Director Ruth Kinoti who signed the deal on behalf of the farmers.

Bidco currently works with 12,500 farmers across East Africa, who supply 15,000metric tonnes of soya beans and sunflower seeds that is half the processing capacity for Bidco’s Thika based crushing and processing plant.

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Shalem is a social enterprise that links small holder farmers with reliable and predictable market opportunities and currently works with 20,000 farmers from around the Meru area.

“This deal means a lot for our farmers; it means school feels, it means health care-it means a better life and we are grateful to Bidco for the opportunity,” said Mr Shah.

Shalem also promised to provide Bidco with 2,000 metric tonnes in the coming season for the two crops.

The Bidco CEO challenged Shalem to deliver on their commitment and raise their capacity by roping in more farmers.

Bidco Africa Ltd has manufacturing units in Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania and a footprint in 16 African countries where it sells its products.

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