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Zambian millers propose K75/50kg floor price for maize

The Millers Association of Zambia (MAZ) has proposed K75/50kg as the floor price for maize in this year’s marketing season. Government is still mute on the issue.

MAZ president Andrew Chintatala said their proposal, which is K5 less than last year’s price, must pass on the benefit of the bumper harvest to consumers.

“It will only be realistic and fair for farmers to sell the maize at K75/50kg because going higher than that will result in higher prices for mealie-meal,” Chintala said.

The Ministry of Agriculture and the Zambia National Farmers Union (ZNFU) haven’t yet reacted to MAZ’s floor price proposal.

The maize marketing season opened a week ago but government is still silent on the floor price. This caused panic among farmers who are being lured by spot cash offered by private grain traders. They buy maize at K50/50kg.

Chintala has meanwhile urged millers to secure enough grain to avoid a situation where government is forced to step in to ensure uninterrupted production of mealie-meal.

“I’m urging our members to take a leading role and secure enough grain in this year’s marketing season to ensure there is no interruption in production up to the next crop harvest,” he said.

Last year government was compelled to sell subsidised maize through the Food Reserve Agency. This after millers ran out of the commodity and government had to step in to ensure stability in mealie-meal prices.

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