Cargills, together with Central Bank and Bank of Ceylon launch “Yal Utpaththi” creating new markets for farmers in North
Cargills (Ceylon) Plc, the Central of Bank of Sri Lanka together with Bank of Ceylon (BOC) have launched a joint programme to create markets for farmers from Jaffna who specialise in Palmyrah based products. This follows the Central Bank’s Poverty Alleviation Microfinance Project ‘Probodini’ funded by the Bank of Ceylon.
Under the project over 11,000 low income households have already been reached by BOC and Rs. 105 million has been granted among over 3,000 micro entrepreneurs, farmers and fisherman to restart their income generating activities in the peninsula.
Accordingly products made by the beneficiary farmers such as traditional sweetmeats ‘Mun Ata Kavum’, palmyrah products, juggary, baskets made out of palmyrah leaf etc. will be sold at 20 selected Cargills Food City outlets island wide in line with the Deepavali Festival.
“In order to meet the gap between the grass root level micro enterprises and the organised market channel, BOC in association with Cargills (Ceylon) Plc has made arrangements to establish a supply chain for palmyrah products as an initial step. ‘Probodini’— Poverty Alleviation Microfinance Project implemented by the CBSL provides required skill, training and financial assistance through BOC to produce best quality palmyrah products while Cargills (Ceylon)Plc ensures the producers with a lucrative market through its Cargills Food City Supermarket chain island wide”, the Central Bank said.
Imtiaz Wahid, Managing Director, Cargills (Ceylon) Plc commenting on this initiative said, “Cargills has consistently invested in Sri Lanka even in the most challenging times and has extended its support to smallholder farmers islandwide. We were among the first corporates to enter the East and now in this new environment we have accelerated the pace of our investments in the North. We have already trained 1,000 farmers from Jaffna and have commenced direct purchasing. This initiative launched together with the Central Bank and Bank of Ceylon further reiterates our commitment to the development of regional Sri Lanka and thereby partnering the resurgence of our nation.”
The official launch took place at the Staple Street Cargills Food City, under the patronage of the Assistant Governor of the Central Bank W.M. Karunaratne; the Chairman of Bank of Ceylon, Dr. Gamini Wickramasinghe; Deputy Chairman, Cargills (Ceylon) Plc Ranjit Page; and Managing Director of Cargills (Ceylon) Plc Imtiaz Wahid, on Deepavali day falling on 5 November 2010.
The products under the “Yal Utpaththi” programme will be available at Wattala, Kotahena, Park Road, Mutwal, Badulla, Vavuniya, Bandarawela, Trincomalee, Batticaloa, Wellawatte, Nawalapitiya, Hatton, Nuwara Eliya, Grand Pass, Ampara, Kundasale, Kandy, Negombo, Katugastota and at Staples Street Cargills Food Cities.