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Lubinda cautions farmers against unscrupulous maize dealers

TEDDY KUYELA, Lusaka
MINISTER of Agriculture and Livestock Given Lubinda has cautioned farmers in Zambia against selling their produce to unscrupulous buyers.
Government last year pegged the maize floor price at K70 per 50 Kg bag.
Mr Lubinda said farmers should not get desperate for immediate cash and allow themselves to be exploited by dishonest buyers as the Food Reserve Agency (FRA) would purchase all their maize this marketing season.
The minister said in an interview on Tuesday that it is unfortunate that some farmers have already started selling their produce to vendors at a low price.
Mr Lubinda, however, said farmers are at liberty to negotiate on how much they can sell their maize to millers.
“Zambia is running a liberal economy and farmers are at liberty to negotiate with millers on how much they can sell their maize to them.
“Farmers should not sell their maize at lower prices, let them negotiate for better prices,” he said.
Mr Lubinda also urged farmers in the country, especially smallholders to venture into conservation farming.
He said conservation farming is paramount because it does not only enhance food productivity, but is also a good way of mitigating the impact of climate change.
Mr Lubinda further said Government will continue to investment in the agriculture sector because it plays an important role in employment creation as well as enhancing economic growth.
The minister also urged farmers to embrace new farming technologies to help cushion the impact of climate change.  He said the unpredictable rain pattern still remains a challenge to farmers, hence the need for them to embrace new farming technologies to mitigate the impact of climate change.




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