FRA exceeds Kawambwa maize purchase target

THE Food Reserve Agency (FRA) has bought 212,021 by 50 kilogramme bags of white maize in the 2015/16 marketing season in Kawambwa, a figure slightly higher than the district’s target of 200,000.
FRA district marketing assistant Jason Mbuzi said there are still some bags of maize waiting to be sold to the agency at various depots.
Mr Mbuzi said this in the Zambia National Farmers’ Union (ZNFU) Friday brief availed to the Daily Mail on Monday.
“The Agency has bought 212,021 by 50-kilogramme bags of white maize which is more than the district’s target of 200,000 by 50 kilogrammes,” he said.
A check by ZNFU in some selected depots found some bags of maize waiting to be sold to the agency.
Meanwhile, Mr Mbuzi said some farmers who supplied maize to the agency when the buying exercise commenced have been paid.
“However, some farmers who sold maize more than two weeks ago have appealed to the FRA to speed up the payment process to enable them buy farming inputs on time,” he said.
However, inputs under the Farmer Input Support Programme (FISP) for the 2015/16 farming season have started arriving in Kawambwa.
The ZNFU says a total of 7,199 by 50-kilogranmme bags have been received out of the expected 27,800 by 50-kilogramme bags of D compound.
Meanwhile, World Bank has given a grant of K250,000 to support farmers in Chibombo under the Livestock Development and Animal Health Project.
Farmers, who are in five groups, are being given about K50, 000 each.
The ZNFU says being a matching grant, farmers are expected to meet their 25 percent material contribution.
“About 100 farmers were picked in Chibombo to benefit from the grant and have since managed to provide the needed 25 percent contribution. The selected farmers are currently undergoing production and enterprise management training at Keembe Farm Institute. This training is aimed at equipping them with necessary skills in pig production, dairy, poultry and farming as business concepts, among others,” the statement reads.

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