Zimbabwean cooking oil producer ZimGold has offered free sunflower seeds and a guaranteed offtake agreement to local farmers to ensure its own input supply amid the global shortage that has seen prices of the commodity soar.
The shortage of sunflower oil has added to the pressure that food price inflation is piling on consumers. While prices have eased slightly recently as supplies trapped in Ukraine by the war in that country begin to trickle out, prices in many countries remain high enough to have a huge impact on poverty levels.
After the invasion of Ukraine by Russia, the supplies of sunflower seeds and oil from those countries were cut off. Russia and Ukraine combines produces most of the world’s sunflower seeds and oil.
ZimGold confirmed that they are currently buying sunflower at their Chegutu, Checheche and Sanyati centers and are incentivising farmers to plant sunflower for the next season.
“For the coming season we will provide seed and a guaranteed offtake at market prices across our buying depots in the country,” a brand spokesperson informed FoodForAfrika.com.
ZimGold is a product of PureOil, a leading low cost producer of edible oil and fats and related agro-processed products in in the southern African country. The ZimGold brand also has an established soya bean contract farming scheme to develop its supply of that commodity.
Under contract farming farming programme, launched in 2016, the company finances the growing of soy beans by local farmers. Training and agronomy services and other inputs are also provided to enable farmers to grow the oil seed viably. The seeds are then bought back at market-related prices for the company to express and market the oil.