Minister of Agriculture Dora Siliya says Zambia needs to do more to make use of excess cassava that is produced in the country.
Ms. Siliya says there has been interest from mining firms to use cassava starch in processing plants and in the beverage industry for beer production.
She notes that the country has also issued the first licence to produce ethanol from cassava.
Ms. Siliya said the demand for cassava is likely to outstrip the current excess cassava production in the country.
She said this in a speech read for her by Agriculture Permanent Secretary Julius Shawa at the official opening of the 3rd Cassava World Summit in Lusaka.
And Presenting a Paper on value addition and investments in the cassava industry, Premiercon Starch Company Limited (PSCL) Chief Executive Officer Lubasi Yuyi said company intends to establish a starch manufacturing company in Zambia.
Mr. Yuyi said the company with support from the Citizens Economic Empowerment Commission -CEEC- intends to establish the plant at a cost of 3.5 million dollars.
He said the company intends to establish an out-grower scheme in order to reach a target of about 80,000 metric tonnes of processed cassava per year.