Local and Regional Food Aid Procurement in Zambia
By law, US food aid relies on commodity procurement in the US. A powerful political coalition of US farm groups, shippers and relief agencies vigorously supports these in-kind food aid donation. As an alternative, local procurement of food aid, in Africa, has attracted growing interest because of its potential to reduce landed costs and speed delivery times. For this reason, many food aid donors, other than the US, have switched to local and regional procurement of food aid commodities. This paper reviews experience with local and regional food aid procurement in Zambia. The study focuses primarily on experience of the World Food Programme (WFP), the agency with the most extensive experience conducting local and regional procurement in Africa. WFP’s experience suggests that local or regional procurement of food aid offers significant savings, in both commodity costs and delivery times. On average, maize procured in Africa costs 30% to 50% less than white maize imported from the US and arrives 1 to 2 months faster than commodity imports from the US.
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- Mwanaumo, Anthony & Jayne, Thomas S. & Zulu, Ballard & Shawa, Julius J. & Mbozi, Green & Haggblade, Steven & Nyembe, Misheck, 2005. "Zambia's 2005 Maize Import and Marketing Experiences: Lessons and Implications," Food Security Collaborative Policy Briefs 54615, Michigan State University, Department of Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics.