Fairtrade sugar producer to give talk in Seaford

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Seaford Fairtrade Group has announced that it will be visited by a Fairtrade sugar producer from Malawi during Fairtrade Fortnight.

Henry Matenda will be speaking at the Fairtrade service to be held at Crossway Church, Steyne Road, on Sunday (March 3) at 10.30am.

Henry owns a 2.5 hectare plot of cane as part of the Kasinthula Cane Growers’ Association (KCGA) and has been a member since 1998.

KCGA is a smallholder sugar cane project located in an

inhospitable region of southern Malawi. Droughts occasionally result in famine, and the twice-yearly rains often bring floods.

Literacy levels are low and poverty is widespread. Most people live in basic mud huts with grass roofs.

KCGA was set up in 1996 as a rural poverty reduction

venture by the Government of Malawi and a nearby sugar mill, now owned by Illovo Sugar.

An area of largely unproductive land was converted to sugar cane production to increase the supply of raw cane to the mill

and an income initially for 282 subsistence farmers, each responsible for two to three hectares.

The project has been extended to 1,155 hectares thanks to an EU grant. Membership has grown to 482 farmers, and

seasonal field workers are now employed in the fields. KCGA was Fairtrade certified in 2003.

Father of two Henry said: “I am proud to be a committee member of Kasinthula Association. With the Fairtrade Premium, we have

constructed a clinic and houses for the farmers and drilled boreholes so that we have safe, clean water.”

For further information on Henry’s visit or the work of Seaford Fairtrade Group, please contact Ralph Taylor on 01323 872399 or Eileen Delaney on 01323 491638.

Henry Matenda’s visit is part of the 2013 Fairtrade Producers’ tour, which has been organised with the support of the European Union.