The Tobacco Association of Malawi (Tama) is advocating for more value addition in tobacco production to boost tobacco exports.
Tama Chief Executive Officer Lemson Chitawo said to consolidate gains from the leaf, farmers need to shift from exporting raw tobacco and invest more in value addition.
Chitawo was speaking during a corporate governance workshop held in Lilongwe recently.
“We are planning to star t processing tobacco produced by our members within the next two to three years. When that happens, we expect tobacco exports to go up and farmers will earn more from the leaf,” he said.
In his remarks, the newly elected Tama President, Abel Kalima- Banda, said among his priorities is to boost the association’s membership base.
“Only about 40 percent of the farmers producing tobacco are our members. I plan to introduce strategies to attract more farmers to join the association. Most farmers lack awareness on the benefits that accrue to them if they join Tama,” he said.
Twenty councilors have been chosen from the 20 demarcated districts that grow tobacco in the country to govern the association for the next five years.
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