ZNFU urges FRA to pay farmers promptly
By Staff Reporter
The Zambia National Farmers’ Union (ZNFU) is prodding grain buyers to offer farmers good prices during the 2019 marketing window.
And the ZNFU has also called on the Food Reserve Agency (FRA) to pay farmers ‘fulfilling’ prices promptly when the marketing window opens.
With three months remaining before the marketing window opens in July, ZNFU president Jervis Zimba said it was obvious for all to see that this has been one of the toughest agricultural seasons for Zambian farmers at large.
Zimba said that this season was exacerbated by droughts and flush floods in some areas that devastated crops and livestock.
He said it had been a struggle to nurture and grow the 2018/2019 crop.
Zimba stated that as the country awaits the marketing window to open, all grain buying stakeholders and prospectors; minor and major, should prepare themselves adequately and offer farmers the best price for their produce.
“We also encourage FRA to set aside adequate resources to pay farmers fulfilling prices promptly, instead of making farmers wait for months with promissory notes,” he said.
Zimba also urged farmers to bargain for the best price that would enable them make a full cost recovery and a good return on their investments.
“We are all aware that production costs have been rising resulting from the exchange rate depreciation which affects all imported key inputs,” he added.