Impact through Employment: Expansion of Existing Businesses
Silverlands Portfolio Companies are key employers in their operating areas. Since making the investments, the number of people employed by each Portfolio Company in Silverlands I has increased, and most increases have been substantial.
Through training our employees, we improve the skills base in the long term within our operations and also more broadly within the communities in which we operate. A wide range of training is provided, including:
Safety: fire-fighting, health and safety, safe handling of chemicals, first aid.
Operators: tractor, forklift, knapsack, chainsaw, combine harvesters.
General agricultural skills: plant production, irrigators, crop and orchard monitors, sprayers.
Livestock: biosecurity, cattle handling, poultry production, Poultry Training Centre “training the trainers”.
Finance, IT: payroll, Excel, tax, capital allowances, internal auditing.
Other: health and wellness days, “Shine Project”, peer educator training, crèche.
Reducing Imports and Carbon Footprints
Our farms increase locally grown produce and therefore reduce import requirements. This benefits the local economies and also reduces the carbon footprint of transportation. In Zambia, at full projected development, we expect to add 10% to Zambia’s wheat production. Growing seed maize in Tanzania reduces the need to import it from Zambia. Before we implemented Tanzania’s first poultry feed mill, Tanzania was importing its entire soya requirement. We are now focussing on increasing small-scale farmer production so we can buy locally, as part of our Hub – Out-grower model, and plan to purchase significant amounts of soya by 2021. The carbon footprint of this soya would be substantially greater were it to be imported from outside Tanzania.
Our farmers also practice zero/minimum tillage which maximises carbon retained in the soil as organic matter. This has the benefit of minimising carbon dioxide and other greenhouses gases which are released from the soil into the atmosphere.
Increasing Access to High Yielding Seed
We aim to improve other farmers’ yields through the production of high quality seed which is robust in the local conditions. In Tanzania, the 1,400 tonnes of seed maize produced in 2015/16 may be used to plant 56,000ha of maize grown by small-scale farmers.
A number of contractors have directly benefited from our developments.