Small scale farmers commend government for increase in maize floor price

Workers tend to the maize crops on Millers Farm Lusaka, in Zambia, March 17, 2003. An initiative from the International Fund for Agricultural development helps female farmers in Zambia with HIV raise goats. Salim Henry:AP:File
The small scale farmer’s network association has commended government for increasing the maize floor price from k65 to k70 per 50kg bag for the 2014/2015 marketing season.

Association president Edward Nsama has told QFM in an interview that the floor price had remained same for a long time.

Mr. Nsama says the increase will enable farmers get something out of their sweat and encourage them to work even harder.

He adds that his association is also happy that the marketing season will finally commerce on 1st July considering the fact that most farmers were running out of patience and had started selling their maize to private buyers who only exploit them.

Mr. Nsama however points out that the challenge still remains were the farmers will sale the remaining maize considering that the FRA will only purchase 500,000 metric tonnes of maize and 2,100 metric tonnes of paddy rice.

He says farmers will have to sale the remaining maize to private buyers at a cheaper price as the private buyers do not go by the government set price.
Mr. Nsama has also called for prompt payment to farmers by FRA to avoid inconveniencing them.

Agriculture Minister Wilbur Simuusa yesterday announced the long awaited maize floor price for the 2014/2015 maize marketing season which has been pegged at k70.00 for a 50 kg bag.