Remarks by Ambassador Lisa J Peterson: Launch of the Swaziland Farmers’ Cooperative Union Miller Maize Project

February 17, 2016
  • Minister of Commerce, Industry and Trade
  • Regional Administrator
  • Principal Secretary of the Ministry of Agriculture
  • Commissioner of Cooperatives
  • Members of the Swaziland Farmers’ Cooperative Union
  • Distinguished guests
  • Ladies and Gentlemen

Good Morning,

It gives me great pleasure to be here with you today in Ludzeludze (Loo-TZEH-loot-TZEH) as we officially launch the Swaziland Farmers’ Cooperative Union “Maize Miller Project”.  The United States Government and the American people are proud to partner with your diverse group of men, women and youth to improve the efficiency of your cooperative.

By processing your harvests into mealie meal for packaging and sale, you generate income for your community that benefits hundreds.

We know that in the current drought environment the important work of farmers is becoming more challenging.  Whether farmers are facing water shortages or increased supply costs, they continue to labor every day in the fields to provide food for the community and therefore, remain the backbone of Swaziland.

We are pleased that the Ambassador’s Special Self Help Program is playing a part in helping to support Swaziland’s community development.  With our grant of 137,000 Emalangeni, you purchased an industrial miller and eliminated the monthly rental costs that limited your profit margins.

As a result, the milling cost has reduced from 8% to 1% of your operating budget.  As we prepare to officially launch the miller project, let me congratulate you on your achievement.

The Governments of the Kingdom of Swaziland and the United States have a long history of productive and sustained cooperation in the field of community development.  Today, we are grateful for the opportunity to again assist the people of the Kingdom of Swaziland in the form of this project, which would not have been possible without the Extension Services of the Ministry of Agriculture and the cooperative business support of the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Trade.   As SWAFCU expands its market to reach additional secured markets and small scale piggeries, we are confident that its quality product will yield good profits.

This project is a shining example of the partnership between our two countries.  We encourage such collaboration, since it is by working together that we can provide the maximum benefit for the people of this country.

Thank you for inviting me to this very special event and on behalf of the American people I would like to say Nginifisela Imphumelelo (Ngee nee fee seh lah    Im P’hoo meh leh loh) .