Zambezi Harvest is a community-based program that supports local farmers and promotes sustainable agriculture. It sources fresh produce from local farmers, provides training and resources, and partners with businesses to promote locally sourced produce. It also aims to create economic growth by providing a market for farmers to supply the hospitality industry.
The primary focus of Zambezi Harvest is the Chiawa Game Management Area just outside of Lower Zambezi National Park. By supporting sustainable business practices in this area, the community benefits from the tourism beyond the traditional scope of working for lodges. Fostering this relationship not only empowers the community but also contributes to conservation by engaging locals in the preservation of the park and its wildlife. Zambezi Harvest is an offshoot project of the Zambezi Wildlife Trust.
Lodges and Camps that support the Zambezi Harvest have committed to trying to source as much of their fresh produce as possible from the local communities. Most fresh supplies for camps are sourced in Lusaka, then transported 3-4 hours by road. The Zambezi Harvest program supports farmers by giving them a Lusaka price for produce sourced locally in the Chiawa Game Management Area; in most cases this is 2-3 times the price of they would get in the local markets.
The impact of Zambezi Harvest on communities has been profound, with significant positive outcomes observed after just one year of support: