Discontented farmers in Mpumalanga want to know what is going on with the Mpumalanga International Fresh Produce Market which was promised to them more than nine years ago. The multi-billion fresh produce market was meant to be a link between farmers, local, national and international buyers. But despite a R2-billion cash injection, the building is still incomplete. The farmers are not happy, stating there's no reason to believe that the facility will be completed any time soon.
David Mthombeni, the Mpumalanga chairperson for the African Farmers Association of South Africa (Afasa): "Farmers are so frustrated because each year there is a budget allocation that goes to the project but no output or results. We hope one day we will see light at the end of the tunnel.”
In 2013, the provincial department of agriculture estimated that the construction would cost R1 billion over a period of five years. However, so far, up to R2 billion has been spent.
The facility should attract international and large domestic food retailers to Mbombela as well as create open markets for the province's food producers.
[ R1 = €0.057 ]