Economy

Antonio Mwanza: Maize Floor Price Killing The Farmer

The floor price of K60 per 50kg bag of maize as announced yesterday by the Food Reserve agency is a devastating blow to farmers, and yet, another testament that PF is indeed Paya Farmer.

The flow price has been reduced from K85 to K60 per 50kg bag of maize when the cost of production has actually skyrocketed beyond the reach of many farmers owing to the escalating costs of farming inputs such as fertilizer, chemicals, seed and equipment. The cost of transport, packaging, storage, loading and offloading have equally hit the roof, making it more expensive for farmers to market their produce. With the rising cost of production it is only prudent for any decent and caring Government to peg the floor price at a rate that takes into full consideration of the production and marketing fundamentals.

Today, a farmer is making losses of K25 and K1000 per every 50kg bag or one tonne of maize sold, respectively. The price of maize per tonne has fallen from K3400 last year to K2400 this year despite the fact that the cost of producing this same tonne has risen to over K3200 per tonne. Equally, the flow price of Soya beans has plummeted from K5 in the last marketing season to K1.50n this season.

In short, the announced flow price will worsen the poverty situation in the country which is already hovering at alarming levels of over 75% among our rural population.

Agriculture being a high labour intensity venture is the only sure solution to massive job creation and poverty eradication. And any serious government would invest heavily in Agriculture to combat the current high unemployment and poverty levels through improved production and marketing.

When it comes to singing, the PF Government has been so good. They have spent 5 years now singing about agriculture and diversification but they have lamentably failed to invest in the sector and implement policies that would make their song of Agriculture and diversification a reality.

Moving forward we propose the following:

1. That 20% of the next 5 national budgets must be allocated to Agriculture to ensure the following:

a) Mordenised methods of production to improve yields

b) Supply of adequate farming inputs on time

c) Value addition through agro-processing to increase forex and create jobs

d) Serious investment in extenstion activities and information sharing to equip farmers with the knowledge concerning their preferred agro activities

e) Increased investment in Irrigation

f)Increased investment in fish and animal farming

g) Increased investment in other high value cash crops.

2. Government must seriously work on reducing the cost of production by subsidising production and stabilising the general macro fundamentals to ensure low cost of goods and services. If we subsidise production, we will make it cheaper and profitable for farmers to engage in Agriculture.

3. Government must work with other stakeholders to help farmers access markets and make it cheaper and easier for them to trade.

Issued by Antonio Mwanza
FDD Deputy National Secretary

25 Comments

  1. wizkid

    What can happen if Antonio Mwanza was elected to serve as adviser to Dora siliya under E.C.L government? it seems the man went to London school of economics.He has brilliant solutions for the p.f government.

  2. mengmoreler

    Hmm 60 ga!bt zoona ni dununa kumbuyo iyi yeve government ni ya poor familie,mwatipaya wee.

  3. Prisona

    Gud idea, hop you can advise yo friends.

  4. Gift

    This is the beginning of poverty in our country MWe buteko twapapata tumfwileniko uluse fee BA famer mono mucalo icinto shalicepa elo umumwine emo tusambilisha abana ama school’s fees tamubweshako ,ababofi mulebalundila aka transport tayalebwela imikalile ileya pamulu natukwata abana Ku couledge ama Fee’s yali pamulu nomba mwebuteko shi ma famu RNA mwamutitikisha nomba twalafika kwi mul ubu ubulimi shi mulandetye ati ubulimi tatulefwaya my zambla tulangulukeniko tatukwete ukwakutwala abana besu elo cimbi nici ngata mwacitile announce price pantu abaswaili baleshita pe 50kg k100 nomba after baufwa kubuteko nabo nabekisha umtengo bakomako nabo nababwesha umutengo we lice nomba tulelolakwi? Umukula namulesha timba noyo ukushitisha kunse yacalo mwalilesha nomba abantu mulefwaya babwelele mukwibba nafimbipo ifyabula ukulondoloka mwa?

  5. Rodger

    For sure someone wants to kill the farming community in our nation.In Kalulushi we have the Chembe farming block which happens to be in the Chati plantations were farmers have lived for years and years now.These farmers are on the farmers register and are entitled to the F.I.S.P. They own cattle and other livestock and they have built houses in the same areas.The government has constructed schools and polling wards in the same farming areas.To my surprise the forest department held a meeting telling the farmers that they are squatters who should vacate the place now. They are not suppose to stay and build homes in the same areas.The government has built secondary modern school in the same areas why? Is the president aware of such an action.This is a serious matter meant to decampain our hard working president. Mr president come and address the farmers or this will create apathy.

  6. jay Numbi

    Farmers spent a lot of money, energy and time to make money and farmers they are best because they selling their products on credit. OK continue sana with this habit

  7. kauzganga

    Rodger u seem off target,
    Ask if the president is aware of K60/50kg bag of maize

  8. KD

    Boma loononga banthu iyi manje tizapereka bwanji ana bathu Ku sckl???zoona k60 per50 kg mmmm!!!! OK zilibe kanthu pakuti zabwino zonse mwalandiliratu tsopano pakuti Ali odara amene akulira tsopano::koma chinthu chimozi chamene mufunila uganiza ni ichi mwapeza bwino chifukwa cha anthu pokupasani vote yaulele ngakale pepper yamalamulo at k40 mmm kunene zoona mwalepera kusunga anthu ::::Mao Mao Mao maooo!!!!!boma iyo yabweza zinthu zonse kumbuyo zoona dununa kumbuyo mmmm

  9. moses

    Comment k60

  10. Mwandu

    Stop Complaining This Is What You Wanted, Wait You Will See, This Is Just The Begining.

  11. Commando

    Am now conviced that our PF government is full of tricks and is not walking the talk in some sectors.In Zambia today,it’s very difficult to find meaningfull employment not even dirty jobs,the only and last thing one would do is to settle at the farm and till the land not that one wanted to be a farmer but because one doesn’t have anything else to do.Not long ago when the copper price on the international market there was mass job losses in the mines and the people who were retrenched were given pieces of land (farms)so as to make ends meet.Our PF government said they want to diversify the economy away from copper dependance to agriculture and rightly so,now you have pegged the floor price for white maize this marketing season at k60,honestly speaking it doesn’t make any sense looking at the exorbitant prices of farming imputs and other expenses associated with farming like transport and labour k60 is a mockery and i hope the decision wil be revisited.Is it patriotic front[PF] or paya farmer[PF].Mwamwipaya.

  12. Yeta Lubinda

    Leza Alikke!

  13. haggai edward

    K60 per 50kg bag its too much ,what do you think of us farmers ,don’t bring farmers down ,his exallence think abut it pliz

  14. Mr Genius

    Pf has no vission to run the country – zambia.

  15. Nicolas

    K60 / 50kg bag of white maize. For many of us unemployed consumers, it is good news.
    But what criteria has been used to arrive at this flow price?

  16. jay Numbi

    Commando is right am also supporting his views.

  17. jay Numbi

    Zambia is not Zambia we know nowadays full of bad actions ahaaaaaaaaaa

  18. martin

    Zambian where we going

  19. Mwape

    Mwatipaya zoona ise ma famers

  20. Zax Banda

    mwatipaya mwandi,tiganizirekoni please Atate Athu ba Chagwa…..

  21. Zax Banda

    mwatipaya……

  22. Adam

    Mmmmm tefintu zoona

  23. innocent

    1+1=2,at least the price of Mealie meal has reduced massively.

  24. The

    Priz our president think of farmers

  25. Chanda davies

    i think the govenment there just wasting there time cause since june when the fra sent the workers in feeld upto now those guys out there they have not yet started buying the maize why? because of the price but the fact is that the government is going to give them money for doing nothing what a poor plan so i don’t think if farmers is going to accept this same price if there not going to put it where it was

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