The Food Reserve Agency (FRA) has announced K65 000 as the maize floor price for a 50 kilogramme bag of maize for the 2009/2010 marketing season.
The agency has also announced K60 thousand as the rice floor price for a 40 kilogramme bag for this year’s marketing season.
FRA Board Chairman, Costain Chilala says this represents an increase of 18 percent for maize and 15 percent for rice.
Mr. Chilala announced at a press briefing in Lusaka that the FRA will this year buy 110 000 metric tonnes of maize an 1200 metric tonnes rice at a cost of K200 billion.
He also said the rice and maize price for this year’s marketing season are as a result of consultations with various stakeholders on grounds of production, supply and demand factors affecting the food balance sheet.
Mr. Chilala also said FRA will buy most of its maize from outlaying ares as directed by president Rupiah Banda early this year.
He however said farmers should use the floor prices as guidelines when negotiating with buyers.
Meanwhile, the agency has announced that it will only buy maize and rice from farmers this year.
Mr. Chilala said the withdrawal from buying other crops such as cassava is as a result of non availability of a market and processing plants for the crops.
He said the agency has embarked on a country wide rehabilitating its silos in Kitwe, Chisamba, Monze, Ndola, Lusaka and Kabwe which have beeen vandalised over time.
The FRA Board Chairman said the first rehabilitated silos will soon be commissioned in Lusaka.