Agriculture – AMTA’s 10 years of service excellence to farmers

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Agriculture – AMTA’s 10 years of service excellence to farmers

Having recently celebrated 10 years of unmatched service excellence to Namibian farmers, the Agro-Marketing & Trade Agency (AMTA) continues to solidify its brand and prides itself in being the custodian and linkage between local farmers and consumers. 

Despite the numerous challenges facing local farmers, such as drought, floods and persistent global climate crisis, AMTA has remained loyal and unwavering in its support to Namibian crop production farmers and continues to serve as a gateway to various markets. 

As part of its mandate to ensure farmers have access to markets and are empowered through information and other expertise, AMTA has opened over 10 outlets countrywide, which include silos and fresh produce business hubs as well as a milling

AMTA manages the silos and the fresh produce business hubs on behalf of government. AMTA Grain, AMTA Fresh Produce and NAMFRESH were initially the only three brands associated with the operations of the Agency. 

However, over the years in line with expanding its business operations and model, AMTA in 2021, launched a milling facility in the Kavango West region at Katwitwi settlement to add value to the grain products procured from local farmers. 

The arm specialises in milling white maize and pearl millet (Mahangu) that is traded as a finished product in the form of flour. This white maize meal and mahangu flour is 100% locally produced by AMTA from local grain, which is free of genetically modified organisms (GMOs), and traded under the Golden Fresh Brand. 

Since its inception, farmers have criticised AMTA for delays in the payments for products delivered to the Agency due to bureaucratic and protracted processes. However, with the transitioning and re-positioning of the Agency, significant changes have been noted. 


Positive changes 

Instead of the 30-day waiting period, AMTA has reduced the time to at least four to seven days from the date of receiving farmers’ produce. AMTA will and continues to explore effective mechanisms that will drastically minimise delays to expedite payments whilst considering accountability. 

With about 70% of Namibians wholly depending on agriculture for their livelihoods and income, which may be agronomy, horticulture, livestock or fisheries, AMTA intends to expand its current silos’ capacity from 22 900 tonnes to 99 280 tonnes in the short term and eventually 322 660 tonnes in the long term to accommodate more farmers.

Additionally, AMTA will be increasing its milling capacity to ensure effective grain re-cycling and enough staple food to feed the nation. 

All these efforts are aimed at increasing value addition and the establishment of distribution centres in areas where there is an abundance of production.

AMTA was established as a specialised agency for the agriculture ministry to coordinate and manage the marketing and trading of agricultural produce in Namibia. 

AMTA’s mandate is to manage the fresh produce business hubs and national strategic food reserves infrastructure. 

In performing its role, AMTA works closely with AgriBusDev and the Namibian Agronomic Board.