Teju's Soroti Fruit Factory has reignited its orange crushing operations, marking a fresh commitment to supporting local farmers by purchasing one million tons of oranges directly from them. Previously under scrutiny due to middleman interference, the factory has revamped its market approach, aiming to establish a direct connection with farmers and ensure fair compensation.
Julius Ekom, the Executive Director of Soroti Fruit Factory, has emphasized the severance of ties with middlemen and expressed dedication to supporting local farmers. The factory plans to inject 450 million Shillings into the local economy this season, demonstrating a shift toward a more community-oriented approach.
The Board Chairman, Ekomoloit Onapito, highlighted the significance of the direct purchase model, emphasizing the factory's commitment to empowering local farmers and reshaping the supply chain for the community's benefit. To enhance farmer involvement and eliminate concerns related to middlemen, the factory introduced a policy where farmers receive 10% of the juice from their sold oranges. This policy aligns with broader efforts to strengthen local economies and promote sustainable agricultural practices.
While there is renewed optimism among farmers, challenges, particularly regarding transportation costs, persist. Local farmers have raised concerns about the high costs of transporting oranges to the factory, emphasizing the need to address these challenges for the initiative's success. The focus on empowering local farmers and reshaping the supply chain brings hope for a more sustainable and community-driven agricultural future, but addressing existing challenges, especially transportation, is crucial for long-term success.