NYAGATARE - Farmers in the districts of Kirehe, Kayonza and Gatsibo in Eastern Province have vowed to join the new Inventory Credit system (also known as ‘warrantage’ in French) to boost their production.
Inventory Credit system is a new programme that allows farmers to use their harvest as security to access credit.
The farmer’s harvest is stored in a warehouse or grain storage until the loan is serviced.
The new programme is financed by Research into Use (RIU) and conducted by Rwanda Development Organisation (RDO) in conjunction with Duterimbere, a micro-finance institution.
Speaking after a one-day study tour of Nyagatare Maize Innovation Group (NYAMIG) in Nyagatare sector, on Thursday, farmers said that they were impressed by the way the system has improved the lives of their counterparts in Nyagatare.
“It is an amazing programme. We could not believe that a farmer can just bring his or her produce for storage and go back with money,” Emmanuel Musabyimana, one of the farmers from Kayonza District said.
The short-term system, according to Clement Kirenga, the in charge of monitoring and communications in RIU, protects farmers against selling their produce at low prices especially during harvest season.
“The need and lack of credit can force farmers to sell their crops to the first buyer often at a low price. Then, the farmer often has to buy food and seeds a few months later at higher prices. One of the advantages of this system is that farmers can sell their crops in the months after the harvest, when market prices are higher,” he said.
Alphonsine Nyirabarinda from Gatsibo Maize Cooperative said that what they learnt from the new credit system will be useful for them to improve their production.
“This system helps us to access loans before another season begins. It is an opportunity we have gained from this tour and we will apply it in our respective districts,” she said.