Humanity Africa CEO Bhupinder Baidwan attended the Mkushi Agricultural and Commercial Show in Mkushi, Zambia between 17-18 June 2016 to network with potential partners for its development initiatives.
Mkushi Agricultural and Commercial Show is an annual event in the district of Mkushi, which is the emerging agricultural hub of Zambia. This was the show’s 44th annual event, hosting 90 businesses and over 8,500 guests. Exhibition stalls showcased seed, fertiliser, agricultural machinery, commercial vehicles, earth movers, banks, solar and wind power, and food. The theme for this year was “Managing the Environment for Growth,” focusing on alternative energy such as solar and wind power. The event has seen an increase in agriculture-based companies coming as guests, reflecting Mkushi’s increasing importance as an agricultural centre in Zambia.
Tradeshows such as these have become an exciting space for potential partnerships and the sharing of ideas and new practices. The atmosphere was vibrant and had areas set aside for children to play with slides, water games and a bouncy castle. Local artists and schoolchildren had the opportunity to showcase their work and live musicians played through the event, underlining the importance of younger generations, the arts, and inclusivity in creating community.
Humanity Africa was the only international NGO present at the tradeshow this year. To meet its goals of partnering with local organizations and working towards sustainable development, Humanity Africa met with small land holders to understand their practice of purchasing seed and fertilizers. Humanity Africa also met with banks such as Stanbic and Zanaco; seed companies Zamseed and Seedco; and machinery companies John Deer, Mahindra Group, and Ford. These meetings have created the foundation for future partnership and growth.
Humanity Africa plans on returning to the event as a host next year. With a better grasp on the atmosphere and demands of agriculture in Mkushi, we will be better prepared to work with small-scale farmers, banks, and companies. The tradeshow was a valuable chance to build relationships and be involved in the community of Mkushi which Humanity Africa serves. Mr. Bhupinder Singh Baidwan was honored to be able to attend the event and further Humanity Africa and Mkushi’s goals of working towards better livelihoods and sustainable development.