Editor’s note: This is one of a series of posts by students from Michigan State University in the U.S. and LUANAR University in Malawi who participated in the Frugal Innovations Program of the Global Center for Food Systems Innovation.
By Joel Phiri
At the closure of the session on the 11th of August, 2015 group names for specific market visits were announced and my group (myself, Christine and Flora) was assigned to Area 47 market.
It is a small and slow market but with numerous problems. Regardless of this it is somewhat clean and the sellers are friendly and organized.
The most common problem that mentioned by all sellers interviewed on the visits was the positioning of the market. They emphasized that the market was positioned wrongly that customers do not easily notice its existence. Thus business is slow.
Apart from that, the market faces huge competition with the establishment of Tsoka market. Most of the surrounding residents prefer to buy from Tsoka since prices are relatively lower there. Thus continuity is in limbo.
During this visit we tried to do resource and market mapping of which key actors (customers, producers, city council and fellow sellers) and their vision within the next five years were captured together with the sellers. On top of this we also came up with a sketch map of the market.
The information gathered so far will help us narrow down to a specific area that we want to work on.