Farmers in Gwembe who supplied maize to the Food Reserve Agency (FRA), are due to start receiving their payments next week. Â
Â Musisa Cooperative Chairman, Simeon Mungazi, told ZANIS that the list of farmers who have so far supplied maze to the agency was already sent to the bank, adding that he was hopeful that payments would be effected by next week.
Â Â Â Mr. Mungazi disclosed that the agency had bought over 1,500 x 50Kg bags of maize, from almost 30 farmers.
“We have bought over 1,500 bags of maize from 30 farmers, and this is only week two since we began buying maize. It’s a pity that the maize we have in stock is only from Musisa Cooperative”, he said. Â Â
“The maize we have purchased so far is only from one cooperative. It is unfortunate that our colleagues from the valley areas have let us down.
They have not yet come forth to bring their maize”, he added. Â Â Mr. Mungazi attributed the poor response from farmers in the valley areas, to the lack of transport to ferry their maize to the only FRA satellite depot in the district. Â Â
Â He was however optimistic that Gwembe would beat the 4,000 x 50kg bags it has targeted to sell to the FRA in the 2006-2007 farming season. Â Â
Â Mr. Mungazi said the 2000 empty grain bags supplied by the FRA to Gwembe were nearly running out due to the overwhelming response from farmers, saying that there was need for the agency to consider supplying more bags to the district.
Â Â “We fear that the empty grain bags may soon run out. This is because farmers are coming in large numbers. Rright now we only have 200 bags left, and I am sure by tomorrow they would have ran out”, he said. Â Â
Â Musisa Cooperative, which was picked as the buying agent for the FRA in Gwembe, has managed to beat its targeted number of 500 bags, by tripling the number to 1,500 bags so far. Â Â
Last week, Gwembe opened its maize buying season with a target of selling 4,000 bags of maize to the FRA. Â Â
It was only last year when the district managed to sell over 2,000 bags of maize to the FRA for the first time in the history of Gwembe