The Millers Association of Zambia (MAZ) dismissed claims by the Zambia National Farmers Union (ZNFU) that a maize storage crisis is looming. “That is a false alarm,” MAZ president Andrew Chintala, reportedly said.
Last week ZNFU said storage space will be a major challenge, as Zambia accumulated huge stocks of maize as a result of the moratorium on grain exports.
According to ZNFU, most farmers did not have storage facilities and relied on quick transportation of their maize to buyers. An over-supply will lead to a decline in demand, leaving farmers stuck with their crop.
The organisation estimates that Zambia will have a total of 915 000 tons of maize prior to the 2017 harvest. A further 120 000 tons are expected from farmers who planted early maturing maize.
Chintala, however, insisted there was enough capacity for storage of maize, even with increased stocks. ZNFU has not yet responded to MAZ’s assertions.