Machinga needs 4,000 litres of chemicals to save crops


Machinga District Agriculture Development Office says it needs at least 4,000 litres of chemicals to deal with the fall armyworm, which has affected over 1,150 hectares of maize in the district.
Machinga District Agriculture Development Officer, Edward Katunga, said in an interview that, so far, only 490 litres of the required chemicals have been provided by the government, through the Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development.
But Katunga said the district requires 4,000 litres to deal with the fall armyworm, adding that the worms might spread to other areas.
“The problem is huge. More farmers have been affected. However, let me say that the government has provided us with 490 litres of chemicals which we have already distributed to some of the affected farmers. However, we need more chemicals,” Katunga said.
He said that, last week, his office, through Machinga District Council Agriculture Service Committee, held a meeting with key stakeholders to find ways of soliciting support for the affected farmers.
“Through the meeting, we managed to get a pledge of 4, 000 litres from one of our partners, who has also pledged to provide us with 45 sprayers to be used in the exercise. But we need more support because what we have at the moment are only pledges,” Katunga said.
Malawi is under attack from a massive invasion of fall armyworms which have, so far, destroyed crop fields in 20 districts.
A couple of weeks ago, President Peter Mutharika declared a state of national disaster, an announcement the Farmers Union of Malawi described as too little too late.

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