Only 4 out of 36 silos have grain as NFRA sounds SOS: Chaponda claims Malawi has enough maize to feed the nation

Grain reserves have now been depleted and the country within a month run out of maize which will trigger inflation and the cost of life.

Some of the trucks carrying maize  ready for offloading. Pic by Linda Likomwa

Some of the trucks carrying maize ready for offloading. Pic by Linda Likomwa

The general manager of the National Food Reserve Agency (NFRA) Nasinuko Saukira has said only four out of the 36 silos have maize which means the country has only 20000 metric tonnes of the grain.

“Our maize stocks are extremely low and this might affect half of the population,” he said.

This comes at a time when President Peter Mutharika and Agriculture minister George Chaponda are assuring the nation that the country has enough maize stocks.

Chaponda told parliament this week that government officials are in Brazil and Mexico to buy maize.

He said Zambia and Tanzania, where the government had high hopes of getting the maize, are now very conscious not to sell much because of the looming food shortages.

Nasimuko said the government has just released K10 billion for the purchase of maize locally and the process is going on very slowly because of scarcity of maize and exhobitant prices vendors are selling.

Speaking after touring NFRA Headquarters in Lilongwe, Chaponda said about 20, 000 tonnes have already been bought.

“NFRA is supposed to buy 40,000 tonnes of maize and half of it has already been bought. We started buying the maize on Monday and am impressed with the way farmers are coming to sell maize to the agency,” he said.

Chaponda also said he was impressed with how offloading of the maize was done, checking the quality, fumigation and how the maize is stored.

“We submitted tenders to buy maize from outside the country and some have already shown interest to sell their maize, but most of the maize would be coming from neighbouring countries,” explained Chaponda.

He then said his ministry is empowering about 285, 000 small holder farmers to be using solar and treadle pumps to produce more maize and sell them to NFRA and Agricultural Development Marketing Cooperation (ADMARC).

According to Chaponda, People’s Republic of China would also help Malawi with rice and the aid is expected to arrive in the country in July and August while maize from Zambia would start coming in the country in September.

He explained that some maize will come from Brazil, World Food Programme (WFP) would also buy its own maize and the United States of America (USA) will support the country with 44 million USD to buy maize.

Maize prices still remain extremely high with vendors in Nsanje selling K17000 per bag of 50 kg.

The country needs at least 1.2 million tonnes of maize this year because the country produced barely 48 per cent of its food production capacity due to El Nino weather phenomenon prompting Mutharika to declare Malawi a state of nation disaster. –Additional reporting by Linda Likomwa – Mana

Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :

Please share this Article if you like Email This Post Email This Post

More From Nyasatimes

More From the World

8 thoughts on “Only 4 out of 36 silos have grain as NFRA sounds SOS: Chaponda claims Malawi has enough maize to feed the nation”

  1. Malitili Wamkulu says:

    APM fill the remaining silos with plenty of grasshoppers and mice. We will make do with them. Nsima nsima chani apa, fetseki

  2. Lion Biko says:

    Hoshea 4:6
    My people perish for lack of knowledge because you have rejected knowledge. I reject you from being a priest to me. Since you have forgotten The Laws of YAH The Creator. I also forget your children.

  3. is that why P.M………………….wasa endorsing the rat mice foood habit ………………..to cater for the deficit ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,at hand?……………………………….

  4. Vumani Mkabenga says:

    Lets us cross our figures as we look unto God because no body seems to be giving a clear direction on the survival plans of Malawians. Now that the grasshoppers and mices have been introduced on the menu of Malawians, may I call upon the Ministry of Agriculture to advise as to where these food stuff can be found and also the conservative measures as we need to stock them for our use during our meals.

  5. The Commentator formerly known as Obanda Joyce Nti says:

    Wawa a Malawi. Going hungry in a land of milk and honey. Your land can grow cassava but you cry hunger over lack of maize. You have a vast lake that can irrigate your maize fields but you cry famine over lack of rains.

  6. Tikondane says:

    This is June and people are already starving koma wina osaleka kunama? Akulu akulu tidzitengapo phunziro zikamatere; dzavoteni mwanzeru ulendo uno. Zomati ndivotere wamtundu wakwathu siizi tikufera limodzi ndi amkhonde omwe kkkkkkkk! Just imagine; come December, what will happen? Nanga podzafika nthawi yokolora; April, May , June? kkkkkkkkk!!! Boma iloooooo!!!!

  7. Peter Nkosi says:

    If you read this article carefully, you see that there is VERY little maize readily available to half of the people , and GoM is just telling us about plans, such as bringing it from Brazil.

    ” … only four out of the 36 silos have maize which means the country has only 20000 metric tonnes of the grain.

    How much maize does an individual eat in one day? Let’s say ½ kg and do some number crunching.

    20,000 tonnes = 20,000 x 1000 kg = 20,000,000 kg

    If 8 million need that maize, then each one can have only 20,000,000 / 8,000,000 = 2½ kg. THAT IS ENOUGH FOR ONLY FIVE DAYS!!!!!

    “Chaponda said about 20,000 tonnes have already been bought.”

    Whoopi Doo! Enough for another five days.

    ” … maize from Zambia would start coming in the country in September.”

    Well, maybe there will be no maize from Zambia. That country is waiting until September to assess its own needs, since it too is harvesting less than usual. It may need to keep all of its maize for itself.

    And so on.

    1. The Commentator formerly known as Obanda Joyce Nti says:

      Kodi what’s this obsession with maize? Personally I think Nsima tastes horrible anyway. Cassava, potatoes, are delicious alternatives which don’t call for as much water. Koma mMalawi Ndi Nsima yake. Eh! No comment.

Comments are closed.