cotton pickers.jpgThe Agricultural Marketing Authority says it has put in place a legal framework to ensure that fairness prevails between cotton producers and farmers in the marketing of the commodity.

 

The Agricultural Marketing Authority (AMA) Chief Executive Officer, Rockie Mutenha says they have amended statutory instrument 142 of 2009 of the AMA Act to guide all stakeholders in contract farming to avoid disputes between cotton farmers and contractors.

The move is aimed at ensuring that contractors provide adequate funding and a viable price for the commodity.

“As a regulatory authority, we want to make sure that there is fairness and farmers must be provided with inputs and technical assistance…in turn they should deliver their crop to the contractors and avoid side marketing,” says Mutenha.

Meanwhile, Mr Mutenha has urged all farmers and farmer representative organisations to register with AMA before the 15th of December deadline.

He said the registration is critical in ensuring that the authority has the exact number of cotton farmers on its database and devise ways to help them.

cotton plant.jpg“We closed the registration of producers on the 31st of October and the deadline for farmers is the 15th of December. This enables us to know the number of buyers and farmers so that we can control the marketing of crops and avoid a scenario of side marketing,” says Mutenha.

The move is aimed at ending the stand off between farmers and contractors in the next 2010/11 to avoid what happened last season when cotton farmers held on to their crop accusing contractors of  offering uncompetitive prices.