By Tione Andsen
Lilongwe, October 10, Mana: National Food Reserve Agency (NFRA) has managed to procure 23,084 metric tonnes of maize to replenish Strategic Grain Reserve (SGR) from 185 registered farmer co-operatives and associations.
NFRA Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Brenda Kayongo disclosed this Wednesday during a Media briefing at Kanengo in Lilongwe on the progress of maize procurement.
She said Agency has still 15, 249 metric tonnes to procure from the remaining K 4.9 billion out K 12 billion budget they were given by government to replenish the SGR.
“We have noted slow progress of maize deliveries from co-operative and associations and procurement of the stocks commenced on August 16, 2022,” the CEO added.
She attributed to slow maize deliveries to shortage of diesel that country has been experiencing in the past weeks since the market was opened.
Kayongo said Agency has now opened the market to all willing seller to sale their maize at K 300 per kilogramme.
“We have opened the market to all local commercial and individuals’ farmers that have maize to sale to the agency and the minimum requirement for sale was one tonne,” she said.
Kayongo disclosed that the market has opened on October 5 2022 up to October 31, 2022 or before, upon attainment of the required tonnage.
The CEO said the selling depots would be at Kanengo Silos Complex in Lilongwe, Kazomba Depot in Mzimba, Limbe Depot in Blantyre, Mangochi Silos Complex in Mangochi and Bangula Depot in Nsanje.
She said NFRA has 89,000 metric tonnes of maize in stock while Department of Disaster Management Affairs (DODMA) has a requirement of 90,000 metric tonnes of maize.
She said if the Agency would procure the remaining 15,000 metric they would have 104,000 metric tonnes in stock for use.
A Commercial farmer, Jimmy Chiwaya hailed NFRA for opening up the market to commercial and individuals’ farmers to sale their maize stocks to them.
He said NFRA would be able to meet the required 15,000 metric tonnes of maize within short period of time.