MORE than 2,000 bags of maize that were stored at the Food Reserve Agency (FRA) extension storage site in Mkushi District have been soaked.
Mkushi District FRA assistant marketing manager Ferdinand Munyumbwe confirmed the development to ZANIS.
Mr Munyumbwe explained that 2,983 by 50kg bags of maize from the 2012—2013 season were now rotten due to exposure to moisture that resulted from water seeping through the slab at the sub-storage site in Indeco Township.
He said the development had translated to 1.49 metric tonnes of maize going to waste, adding that the approximate monetary loss was K190,970.
He pointed out that the problem was discovered yesterday during the inspection of the maize bags.
Mr Munyumbwe observed that although the maize had been securely covered with tents to prevent exposure to rains, it was unfortunate that ground water had seeped through the slab and had come in contact with some maize bags.
During the inspection tour, Mr Munyumbwe was accompanied by officials from the District seed inspection department under the Agriculture Ministry.
Meanwhile, Mkushi District senior seed inspector Webster Banda said the rotten maize was unfit for consumption.
Mr Banda advised officials from the FRA to ensure that the damaged seed is destroyed as soon as possible.
According to data obtained from the FRA office in the district, Mkushi’s main FRA shed has a total storage space of 40,000 metric tonnes of maize. – ZANIS