The Tobacco Association of Malawi (TAMA) on Thursday officially opened its 27th Annual Congress, a gathering that draws together, stakeholders, tobacco farmers representatives across the entire region of Malawi.
Speaking when he presided over the opening of the annual congress, Vice President Saulos Chilima acknowledged the role tobacco farming plays in the country’s economy, saying tobacco is a strategic crop to Malawi and it generates earning, offers employment and contribute to the social wellbeing of the county.
“Government will engage various companies to explore and widen tobacco exports to the United States of America (USA) and other markets across the globe, as government we will also work hand in hand with TAMA so that we map the way forward on how best we can analyse some of the challenges facing the tobacco industry in this country”, he said.
Also speaking during the opening of the annual congress the Principal Secretary in the Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water development Erika Maganga added that tobacco will remain the key cash and security crop in Malawi despite the pressure from ant-lobbying to stop growing it.
She further appealed to the Government to continue formulating programs and to safeguard the benefits that tobacco farming is currently giving to farmers and the country as a whole.
Noting the current climate change that is hitting the country and the world, this year’s annual congress is held under the theme sustainable climate change mitigating measures a must in tobacco farming.
TAMA is the largest and oldest tobacco grower body in Malawi, whose history dates back to 1929. Its mission is to provide visible and compelling services to the grower members and perpetuate sustainable balance in the generation of wealth in a manner that ascertains wider income diversification.mana