FROM cabbages to washing power, and from honey to biscuits – some 70 percent of the products sold by SPAR Zambia are sourced locally, the company has revealed.
And using reputable local companies grows the Zambian economy, supports local employment and creates sustainable business relationships, according to the Private Enterprise Programme-Zambia (PEPZ).
The message came from PEPZ Team Leader Bayo Akindeinde, who was speaking during a signing ceremony between the UKaid-funded organisation and SPAR Zambia that centred on promoting local procurement and improving the competitiveness of Zambian businesses.
“Greater business linkages between large firms in key revenue generating sectors, such as SPAR Zambia, a large reputable supermarket retail chain, and local SMEs can help to create more jobs and improve household incomes. That way, everybody wins,” he added.
“SPAR strongly believes there is a strong commercial case for large companies such as ours to purchase more locally to shorten extended, import-dependent supply chains, purchase products better produced locally and to reduce costs in products where Zambia is competitive,” said Mark O’Donnell, SPAR Zambia Chairman.
SPAR Zambia sources 70 percent of its products by value from local suppliers and has been working to support suppliers in the improvement on their packaging and distribution, he added.
“We are therefore pleased to partner with PEPZ in this regard and look forward to continue building lasting business relationships with local suppliers. We also urge other firms to come on board,” Mr O’Donnell said.
Zambian products sold by SPAR range from flour, vegetables, cereals, eggs, milk, and rice just to spot out a few.
PEPZ runs a Business Linkages Programme (BLP), that seeks to increase the number of transactions between large firms and Zambian businesses by providing support towards accessing technical expertise. PEPZ has undertaken extensive consultations with stakeholders to understand local constraints and apply international best practice in Zambia.