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Farmers urged to store their maize with ZAMACE while they wait for price improvement

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Farmers in Moyo chiefdom of Pemba district found knitting the 50 Kilogrammes bags of maize for sell at one of the Food Reserve Agency depots in the area.
FARMERS have been urged to utilise the Zambia Agricultural Commodities Exchange (ZAMACE) platform to stock their produce in secure warehouses and wait for prices to improve.

ZAMACE executive director Jacob Mwale said once a farmer deposits their grain with the exchange, they will be issued with a warehouse receipt that will be used as collateral to acquire finance and inputs.

Mr Mwale said when grains are deposited, a farmer is assured of safety and can negotiate for a better price for their produce with their preferred buyer.

“The important thing about ZAMACE is that farmers will secure their crops in the warehouse and be given a receipt, which entails that the farmer will not be in a panic mode to sell.

“The warehouse receipt is a document equivalent to title for land and, similarly, it can be used to borrow money and buying of inputs,” he said on the Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation programme dubbed Sunday Interview.

Mr Mwale said currently, crops which can be deposited with ZAMACE are maize, soya beans, wheat, sunflower and sorghum.

“We will soon finalise the deposit of cowpeas and legumes,” he said.

Mr Mwale also said ZAMACE does not restrict farmers to come with a broker to participate but anyone can take part, either through a cooperative, individually, small and medium trader, as long as they are registered.

He said the exchange is also offering guidance and orientation skills to interested parties.

Mr Mwale said due to clear policy announcement in the agriculture sector by Government, registered warehouse space has increased from 425,000 tonnes to 750,000 tonnes and farmers from across the country will be engaged on how to benefit from the platform.

Recently, Government allowed exports of maize and has opened the market to allow factors of demand and supply to determine the price.

7 COMMENTS

  1. Masalamuso
    Great idea for zamace who will charge a handling and storage fee. Then the farmer has to pay trasport to get it there .this further decreases the gut wrenching offer of 60kr per bag.am sure zamace will negotiate sales that benefit themseves, deduct their charges and their hidden profit and farmer gets rest. Are we sure that there will be an increase in purchase price. A country of kaloba zamace are sncouring farmers to use the receipts as collateral for inputs and borrowing money. Fra buys 500000tonnes zamace has capacity of 750000tonnes where does the other 2.25million tonnes go
    • Ndanje Khakis
      Same thoughts. It's like a lion asking a duiker to take shelter with him because the leopard is waiting outside.
    • GUNDIXY
      My concern too. Someone who is independent of ZAMACE ought to advise farmers against the idea. Why should we be talking about borrowing money against a crop that has not been sold? This is very bad. Government should just be realistic and revise the price of maize. In this way we will be protecting our food security.
  2. Chalo Nkhanza
    Never come across a ZAMACE grain shed for miles and miles around Mgubudu or Vubwi. Where on earth are these sheds? Don't tell this peasant farmer he has to cross the whole breadth of Zambia to get to such a shed to store the grain. That's not to take away this best effort from ZAMACE, but the whole exercise won't be so helpful for as long as the sheds aren't wide spread. The Ministry of Cooperatives needs to take the lead in aiding the small scale farmer get the best price for her produce. Assuming the ministry still exists anyway.
  3. The Chosen One
    For Agriculture to really develop in this country it must be self sustaining. GRZ can't be the market maker & it must limit itself to buying strategic reserves. Immediately GRZ imposes a price then it's subsidizing or manipulating the market to the disadvantage of farmers. Since independence GRZ has been trying to be market maker @ great cost to the country leading to the failure for the sector to grow in it's own. The best GRZ can do is to support small scale farmers by buying the strategic 500,000mt from them without forcing them to sale to FRA. GRZ must also help farmers to look beyond Zambia by entering into bilateral arrangements with other countries for export. God Bless Zambia
  4. Chalo Nkhanza
    @3 The Chosen One, that's my take on this too. I also feel that the cooperatives ministry needs to see about mobilising small scalers into cooperative groups so as to help them invest in grain storage facilities. Really the missing piece in the farming jigsaw puzzle is in the market portion. The back-breaking occupation (and it's a noble one) comes to naught if all there is to it are nil returns! We gat to fix the rot on the market side. Only the other day I took a trip to AGCO - Great East Rd, somewhat opposite Barn Motel - to see about buying one of the storage units on offer there. Beautiful facilities there, accompanied by some great lessons in grain storage. But the price can best be met when resources are pooled. So, needles to for me to say I failed to buy the units...
  5. Senama
    Dont take your maize their because they shall surcharge you for storage and that will reduce your price down further than K60. The more month one bag will stay without being bought the more the overcharge will be.

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