The Zambia Commodity Exchange (ZAMACE) Limited introduced vitamin A orange maize on the platform to provide a market for farmers growing it. Before the inclusion of biofortified vitamin A orange maize and sunflower, there were only three commodities being traded on the platform namely soya bean, white maize and white maize bran (a maize by-product). It has been reported that as soon as orange maize was introduced on the platform, two local buyers were immediately interested in buying five ton of biofortified vitamin A orange maize on a monthly basis at a price range of 116-184 USD (1099-1743 ZMK) per ton, a sharp contrast to white maize which is normally sold around 170 USD (1611 ZMK) per ton.
ZAMACE is a private run company that operates Zambia‘s sole commodity exchange. ZAMACE was established by stakeholders in the agricultural sector with a view of providing a structured market mechanism to address the multiple market imperfections affecting the agriculture sector such as high transaction costs, low and asymmetric levels of market information and low levels of trust amongst the agricultural commodity players.
HarvestPlus has recognised that to accelerate adoption of biofortified vitamin A maize in Zambia, there is need to develop output markets and create market linkages between farmers and up-takers. Hence ZAMACE has become one such linkage. HarvestPlus facilitated this linkage by providing a description and quality standard code of vitamin A maize for ZAMACE to have the product included on the platform.
Listing vitamin A maize on the ZAMACE platform means that buyers can readily seek, through a bidding process, this special commodity and that vitamin A maize farmers have a ready market. More than 15 grain and food processors in Zambia have adopted vitamin A maize and integrated it into their product profiles, indicating fast growth.