why no zambian vegetables?

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why no zambian vegetables?

Postby Sunshine » 3rd August 2012, 15:18

Dear Zambia,

Esh, another Saube food store has opened in Lusaka, this time it's fruit and veg city. The shop is nice, but where is the Zambian fruits and vegetables? Everything looks like its imported! Not even Zambian tomatoes onions or beans.

One nice thing is i dont think they know about VAT so you can get some things like carrots and peppers at a fare price, thats until ZRA catch them so be quickDear Zambia,
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Sunshine
 

Re: why no zambian vegetables?

Postby Kalulu » 3rd August 2012, 23:33

hmm this sounds like a sweet deal. I will go grab me as many carrots as I can before ZRA strikes.
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Re: why no zambian vegetables?

Postby mukolwe » 4th August 2012, 02:05

kalulu, that's a problem with the govt. we had a similar discussion before.

our politicians are all smiles in their oversized suits cutting ribbons to these joins thinking it's investment. it's unconscionable what our politicians do. you import vegetables from south africa when there are vegetables in zambia going to waste, go figure. zambia is simply a dumping ground for everything. you try opening a shop in durban or cape town and stock it with zambian food, you'll see how unbalanced these deals are.

sure we want to attract investment, regrettably this' not investment, it's being ripped off, when are these fat men in suits we call our politicians going to wake up? all the profits are going to sa, what a shame

kalebalika mukwai
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mukolwe
 

Re: why no zambian vegetables?

Postby Chimbwili No Plan » 4th August 2012, 22:50

Mukolwe, when one talks of investments, it does not always mean they have to be in the billions or millions of dollars. Yes mega investments are very important, but so are the smaller investments coming into the country. Fact; the SME sector is the biggest employer in the country. So why is it that when shops come into the country, people like you are quick to term them as infestors (fake investors)? As far as I know, the fruit & Veg city have a Zambian staff count of 50+. Nothing fake about that.

Granted, the tomatoes, onions, and other greens are not local. Perfect! So now here's the chance for Zambian small scale farmers to up their game, and start trying to meet the demanding standards these SA chains require for one to become a supplier.

By the way, I went there today and oh boy, have these guys done a fantastic job. Sushi bar, Olive oil on tap. It's as if, we're in SA...!
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Chimbwili No Plan
 

Re: why no zambian vegetables?

Postby kwena » 5th August 2012, 00:07

" It's as if, we're in SA...!"

See this is the zambian mentality why we will never progress . Anything foreign to Zambians is like gold , zambians want to feel like they are abroad . You can take a normal zambian product like bondwe and add a south african a zambian will jump up and down thats its development
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Re: why no zambian vegetables?

Postby Kwena! » 5th August 2012, 00:40

who is this kwena who has stolen my name? Man.... find another name!
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Kwena!
 

Re: why no zambian vegetables?

Postby Guest » 5th August 2012, 05:56

kwena wrote :
> " It's as if, we're in SA...!"
>
> See this is the zambian mentality why we will never progress . Anything
> foreign to Zambians is like gold , zambians want to feel like they are
> abroad .

No you kwena! You have completely missed the point. This myopic view of many Zambians like you is the real reason why we will never progress.

That last statement was deliberately put to show how far behind we are to a country that is a mere 2 hour flight away yet 50 years ahead of us, but we want to whine when they bring in an enhanced shopping experience that many of us that have lived abroad gotten accustomed to.

If you feel it's your patriotic duty buying piss-stained vegetables from the markets just because they're Zambian, go ahead and knock yourself out. Not me. I'll buy from these shops,whether they belong to South Africans or not, for as long as they provide a service or product that is better and unmatched, and not because they're simply foreign, as you so naively seem to think.
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Re: why no zambian vegetables?

Postby mukolwe » 5th August 2012, 18:29

chimbwili,

that's the problem, you want to feel like you're in a different country when in fact you're in zambia.

i'm not sure what your education background is, but i am certain it's not economics or business

govt. has to set up policy for these foreign franchises setting up shops in zambia. they should say, sure, you can open up shop, here are our conditions.....70% of management has to be zambian, 60% of the produce on the shelves has to be zambian, of all the profits, 30% has to be reinvested in zambia., you don't like the terms and conditions, too bad but we can't do business with you. point is they need our business just as much as we need their investment, but why are we always getting the shorter end of the stick?.....

it's really heart breaking and humiliating to see zambians only working as security guides and cashiers. all top management is foreign, what the f*@k!, are you seriously telling me that we don't have zambian business graduates who can be part of management? but our politicians don't think, they are busy cutting the ribbons thinking they are bringing investment.

i don't want to get into personal stuff that i've gone through trying to put zambian produce both in zambian shelves and outside zambia. i can deal and understand the many obstacles outside, it's their country, their industry, but when i face similar obstacles in my own country, that's plain idiocy and that outright pisses me off

kalebalika mukwai
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mukolwe
 

Re: why no zambian vegetables?

Postby Kabudula » 5th August 2012, 21:26

Kwena! wrote :
> who is this kwena who has stolen my name? Man.... find another name!


When Kwena! was not looking, some thief came and stole her name. ain't that a bitch?
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Kabudula
 

Re: why no zambian vegetables?

Postby Slumdog Shalapungu » 6th August 2012, 08:03

The stingy 'burrr' know how to market things to zambians when they set up their businesses. They know if you take bondwe from the road side package and make it look monga its foreign then the zambian will pay top kwacha for that. You can literally take a bag of air from london or new york and selling to a zambian ati mpepo yaku bazungu and zambian will pay you money for that
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Re: why no zambian vegetables?

Postby Chimbwili No Plan » 6th August 2012, 09:32

Mukolwe,

I don't want to have a ping pong match about who has more degrees. So to make you happy, let's agree that you are more educated than I am.

What I will disagree with are your views. Your suggestions remind me of similar sentiments years back when some minister in the LPM govt went public demanding that GAME STORES be stocking Zambian products(!) without first asking himself which factory in Zambia had (and even now, has) what it takes to be manufacturing many of the products they stock, and if not, why not. Or the case of a couple of govt officials who, on their return from the developed world in excitement and awe of what they saw, wanted to make it mandatory for shops to remain open till 22:00. "Why is it that only when we go out of Zambia that we get to enjoy such conveniences?" they asked themselves and the journalists they had gathered. But they too did not appear to question why such timings were only feasible in the well-lit, safe and clean streets of the countries they visited...

So back to your suggestions of stocking the poorly thought of percentages we all would ideally like to have, have you even done a background check of what products this new shop is stocking? Just because it's called Fruit & Veg City does not mean it only stocks South African fruits & vegetables. There are quite a few Zambian products on the shelves sitting right next to the SA products. It's not a pretty sight I tell you. We are so far behind in terms of packaging to the variety of products available to the merchandising displays. In fact, placing beautifully packaged SA products right next to Zambian products provides a very good insight into where we actually stand in relation to international retail trends, and this alone should be motivation enough for the Zambian manufacturer to up his game. So please, bring in more imported products. It's the only way Zambian manufacturers will learn that to make money, we have to match international standards.

Let's talk of cheese. Over here, we know gouda, cheddar & mozzarella. Next to our Parmalat cheeses are at least 20 different varieties, all from SA. Why any Zambian is not making these cheeses is not for F & V City to delve into. They want cheese for which there is a market, they will have get it. In this liberalised economy, you simply cannot impose products when they do not even exist locally. Neither can you compel them to stock Zambian products when the standards are well below par. Ice cream for example. We are still stuck with the boring trio of chocolate, vanilla and strawberry. Very airy and diluted, a result of cost cutting tricks during the manufacturing process. Then we have the SA ice cream. Rich, creamy and many exotic flavours. It's a choice, my choice. Remember, it's not only about the SA franchise, it's also about the Zambian consumer.
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Chimbwili No Plan
 

Re: why no zambian vegetables?

Postby Munalian » 6th August 2012, 10:47

@ Slum,
London/NY air might not be the money spinner due to being polluted....but...your sarcasm is eloquently delivered!
@ Mukolwe,
The case you make is hardly based on Economics but rather a splurge of simplistic & nationalistic sentiments! However emphatic you might be, businesses are run on the basic economic rule of "Supply & Demand"; as such:
(1) Why demand "60% " Zed produce? Why not 61% or better 91%? For a firm to import from SA, it must have looked at the costs of: transport, supply-chain,product availability, quality, quantity, previous dealings with supplier(s)...etc if local producers offered identical products at a cheaper price, believe you me the SA firms wouldn't look twice at importing!!
(2) Why demand "70%" Zed managers?? Why not 71% or better 91%?? Multinational companies tend to use their nationals since those same people understand the business and have the experience. With a mature retail sector (with Game, Shoprite, Pick n Pay...), I would guess retail managers are abundant in SA but doubt the same can be said about Zed!! Shareholders (from SA!!!) want a return for their investment, and only experienced managers with a proven track record can run a business, not some graduates in X & Y studies!! That's why locals only carry out mundane tasks!!
(3) Why demand "30%" be re-invested in Zed?? I don't know which Economics class you took or Business School you attended but logic dictates that if business is good then 100% is re-invested in order to generate more revenue!!! The fact that profits are externalized can be explained by (a) the economic activity isn't sustainable, (b) better returns elsewhere, (c) hostile political climate, (d) new board priorities....etc

Much as it pains me to say this and for the lack of a better expression, Zambia is an economic province of SA!! Ignoring there is hardly any consumerism in Zed, the Zambian market is too small to make the demands you requested!! To put in context, Ford & GM wanted to export their cars to China but the Chinese Govt insisted that the cars be manufactured in China and also applied a quota for management! The Chinese are able to impose their will coz they've a growing middle class -over 500 MILLIONS- that wants to consume and thence foreign firms that want to tap in that market have to abide by Chinese rules!!

My learned friend, it's that simple "DEMAND & SUPPLY" rule that makes Western firms kneel to the Chinese in order to do business there, it's also that rule that makes foreign investors in Zed behave like spoilt kids!
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Munalian
 

Re: why no zambian vegetables?

Postby Chimbwili No Plan » 6th August 2012, 11:01

As for your outdated 'fact' of employing Zambians as only security guards and cashiers, take a good look around when you visit next time. In fact, do more than that. Ask! Ask the right people and ye shall be told. Times are changing. All the SA retail chains (Spar, Shoprite & Pick & Pay) have Zambians in management, including top management. Pick & Pay just celebrated it's 2 year anniversary and to coincide with labour day on May 1st, they had a mini graduation ceremony for 50 of its Zambian employees who underwent a management training program. Some of these initially applied as fruit packers! Out of these, over the years you will see a few of them gradually working their way up. So, what exactly are you on about?

Secondly, whenever a store, a franchise at that, is opening for the first time in a new location, it is imperative that corporate representation is present for a good year at least. This is to ensure everything is being done in line with company policy, so someone with experience is needed. If after that, there is still no Zambian running the store properly and profitably, only then will your point hold any water. You cannot get a Zambian from KCM simply because he has managerial experience at the mines. Any franchiser including a Zambian franchise (if one even exists) will tell you that when venturing into new territories they'll need a Zambian from head office to manage the launch and oversee operations. It's a pity you don't own a franchise, because you would do the same if you were to expand into another country.

And finally, you have shown your unwavering support for anything Zambian, products and people alike, regardless of any negative qualities they may have. I admire that. So I now urge you to continue that support by importing Zambian products into your adopted country. Chances are, after some time, you will stop either because it will become either expensive, tedious or both. Point I am making is you have your reasons for sometimes not buying Zambian products. I have mine too. And mine is the sub par quality presented to me when right next to these products I have the choice of a better looking & better tasting product with detailed nutritional info I need. Just because I am a Zambian residing in Zambia does not mean it's my patriotic duty to empty shelves simply because they are made in Zambia. Tough love is an integral part for the aggrieved party in any relationship to grow.

As Munalian has pointed out, it's the most basic principles of supply and demand at work here, VERY basic.
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Re: why no zambian vegetables?

Postby mukolwe » 6th August 2012, 16:24

By the way, I went there today and oh boy, have these guys done a fantastic job. Sushi bar, Olive oil on tap. It's as if, we're in SA...!" that statement tells me what kind of zambian you are. i've met and known many zambians like yourself

.... "I have mine too. And mine is the sub par quality presented to me when right next to these products I have the choice of a better looking & better tasting product with detailed nutritional info I need"

and who do you think enforces the standards to do with quality and labeling? why do you want to sale yourselves short? zambians can compete with anyone, but they need govt. support, since you're so attached to sa products, take time to research their agric sector and you'll find out how much help they get from their govt, that's the case in any country and that's the point i'm making. zambian politicians think just opening all these stores without any guidelines is in fact investment when it's just day light robbery.

chimbwili you don't see anything wrong with your politicians and their policies or lack of, it's because of such mind sets that zambia will continue to falling behind despite having so much. open your eyes and look. stand up and be counted, demand answers and yes be patriotic and that doesn't only mean buying zambian products, it also means questioning your local representatives and politicians and instead of wanting to live like you're in south africa when you're in fact in zambia.

supply and demand so what, zambians can supply just like south africans can do and that's what i'm trying to tell you, you seem to be saying that as a zambian you can not be at par with the rest of the world, well with that kind of mentality you will. it's the govt's duty and responsibility to support it's local industries, that also goes into giving zambians a advantage over foreigners, but in zambia it's the other way round.

the current polices aimed at creating so called investments is killing zambian dreams. i'm speaking from first hand experience. you don't know how much red tape there is for zambians even do basic things in starting up a business as a zambian, meanwhile a muzungu comes up with a similar and they are given all sorts of special treatment, are you freaking kidding me?

it's happening everywhere, you've all these mining investors they come with their own staff, we have one of the best mining schools in the world, where do you think they'll get jobs in chile? i reject the notion you're presenting that zambia can't supply or compete, may be kind of zambian that you are because you want to live in this illusion that if you eat or buy certain merchandize that you would if you were in a different country then you too are living like those abroad. when i come home i don't buy my fruits and vegies in any of these stores, i go to the local market

in zambia, anything that opens up that's a branch of a sa franchise is seen as a good thing, as an investment, No, do you think that the govt even takes time to study or even read up on these joints?, to them and it seems to you, if you can have just as many joints as they have in south african then you too will be considered developed, that's really misguided. there's nothing zambia is getting out of these franchises, they are taking all their profits away. so you go ahead and shop at these stores, on your way home just may be reality will hit you that you're in fact in zambia when you see what/who is around you.

kalebalika mukwai
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Re: why no zambian vegetables?

Postby Kumunda » 6th August 2012, 23:41

Please do not crucify me for the question I'm about to ask. I ask out of pure ignorance. But also concern for my fellow Zambians.

Is it too much to ask people in Lusaka and other big towns, to grow their own damn vegetables in their own damn backyards? Do the water shortages I hear about, render this venture impractical or unpragmatic? Can someone please tell me if I'm being a total clueless A-hole or am I raising a debatable issue?
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Re: why no zambian vegetables?

Postby Guest » 7th August 2012, 00:41

Mukolwe, mukolwe, mukolwe.

You have clearly made up your mind with your preconceived notions of SA franchises, without even seeing the positive side.

Reality hits me when I'm in these shops. No need to stare out my car window at the passing vendors. Our quality & quantity of products, or lack thereof, on the shelves say it all. If, as you insist, Zambians can compete with and maintain a constant, quality supply, then why oh why don't our products feature prominently on the shelves? Answer me! Why would any sane business stock (expensive) products from SA when he could get equivalent (cheaper) local products? Answer me again!

Simple economics Mukolwe, we are just not good enough and our costs of production are too high (now even higher with the new minimum wage!). You try and convince yourself otherwise, but that's the truth. If I were lying, then surely we would have our own grocery retail chain across the country stocking thousands and thousands of locally manufactured world class products that would be good enough for export too to SA!

Which leads me to my second point, why always blame the govt of the day? No spoon feeding every sector. The playing field is open and competitive. Now go and play! Prove your worth. No excuses. Show me where this shop has been given a preferential advantage over any other Zambian shop. Has any Zambian company even thought of doing this? By the way, there was no cutting of ribbons at this store. It was business as usual. Which goes to show that the govt has more important issues to be worried about, e.g the health sector. Let the private sector do it's thing, we'll do ours.

Also please look at the bigger picture. This issue is not only about vegetables at the market. By you buying from the market, you are supporting a family who has added very little value to his veggies. But by buying veggies and other products (preferably Zambian) from the SA shops, you are contributing to the national coffers (VAT you pay), the salaries of Zambians working there, and the Zambian business supplying these products who also employ more Zambians. The key is to have Zambian products, and only then be bothered about whether the shop selling is a local one or a foreign one.

And what's this hatred you have for SA shops? Damn, if you knew, Zambians are flying plane loads to SA just for shopping trips because we can't get half the sh*t we want here. You are talking as if these SA shops are shoving their products down our throats as consumers. NO! It's what we like and want. If a Zambian can't produce it, why should I stop at that? I'm a consumer and I want these things. If a Zambian manufacturer can't see that, his loss. Step up your game, and stop depending on the govt to help you all the time.

And finally, your wild claim that there is nothing Zambia is getting out of these franchises. I then challenge you to think just for a moment what would happen if the govt had to order them all closed tomorrow, because as you say, there is no benefit for Zambia...
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Re: why no zambian vegetables?

Postby Edward » 7th August 2012, 00:48

Kumunda, it is so good that somebody thinks the way I do regarding this issue. Kumunda, you know that a majority of Zambians never make any effort to grow their own vegetables even though many have large gardens. I have personally asked many relatives why don't you grow some vegetables and their answer is always the same," this is not a farm". I then ask why don't you rear some chickens, somebody will steal them, a poor relatives will be always asking for one or they will dirty the place. The problem with many Zambians is that they live for appearance they can't go shopping without looking as if they are going to a wedding. They think that growing vegetables and rearing some chickens is only for villagers.
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Re: why no zambian vegetables?

Postby Kumunda » 7th August 2012, 02:37

Edward,
I have no reason to doubt the story about your relatives and I think it's very, very unfortunate. Yes I know about this stigma you are describing among many Zambians. They cannot be seen with a hoe in hand or with dirt on their feet.

Even here abroad it's the same thing. You know many places here now charge you an additional fee when you buy recyclable items like canned soda or bottled water etc. The idea is to give people an incentive not to throw those item in the trash can. Instead you are supposed to haul them to a recycling center where you get the full refund of that fee you paid in the store. Many well to do locals here do it either for the money or simply our of concern for the environment.

Now enter a Zambian living here abroad. Many consider it beneath them to go to these recycling centers with bottles or cans. It's always this thing about image. It's quite insane and preposterous.
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rcKykcBjurLSFQCAsY

Postby Adem » 26th August 2012, 15:59

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Adem
 

LDvGveifkNuTmTSgb

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