Phuentsholing: A memorandum of understanding (MoU) for farm shops (Sanam Tshongkhang) implementation was signed between the Ministry of Agriculture and Forests and Food Corporation of Bhutan Limited (FCBL) on August 27. The Officiating Director for Department of Agricultural Marketing and Cooperatives and the Chief Executive Officer for FCBL signed the MoU in presence of the Hon’ble Agriculture Lyonpo, Yeshey Dorji.
With the signing, both parties agrees to establish farm shops as market outlets for the RNR products, provide buyback guarantee and facilitate access to farm inputs and basic food and essential commodities to farming communities.
FCBL shall purchase the market oriented RNR products through cash payment, the contract farming model will be initiated to ensure quality and quantity of products. FCBL shall also provide transport, storage and handling of products and explore both domestic and export markets.
In addition, FCBL will provide basic equipment to farm shops while the bigger ones like processing and value addition machines will be provided by the Ministry along with the budget support as deemed necessary. Both parties will paid quarterly joint monitoring visits at farm shops and also attend necessary review meetings.
According to the marketing officials, the MoU will provide maximum advantage to the rural communities in marketing their products and obtaining inputs to boost their agricultural production.
Till date, 17 farm shops have been established out of 124 identified across the country while 18 is in pipeline for operation. For farm shops, FCBL has recruited 51 nos. sales executives and trained them on financial management and RNR marketing. Twenty-six farm shops accounts have been also opened with the Bhutan Development Bank Limited.
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