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Malawi government urges farmers not to sell their maize to vendors

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Minister of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development Allan Chiyembekeza has discouraged farmers from selling their maize to vendors and counting on the government to give them food aid later on.

“The country is likely experience hunger. It’s a natural calamity that is beyond us but we need to be responsible and take care of what we have.

“My responsibility as minister (on behalf of government) is to ensure that every home is food secure but you shouldn’t deliberately sell all your produce to vendors,” he said at the commemoration of Global Day of Action, where civil society organisations working in nutrition enhancement held an open day in Mulanje on Friday.

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Chiyembekeza noted that many people are fond of selling their maize at a cheap price to vendors and end up being food insecure in the course of the year.

“If you feel you have more than enough, don’t sell to vendors. Government has set up good prices to buy maize through Admarc. During hunger, government may come in to help but can’t reach out to everyone,” he said.

According to the Ministry of Agriculture’s Agricultural Production Estimates Survey (Apes), there is a decline in this year’s crop estimates from 3,978,123 metric tonnes in 2013/2014 farming year to 2,898,123 metric tonnes in current farming year.

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Results of the third crop estimates are yet to be released.

The decline in maize production has been attributed to floods and prolonged dry spell that the country experienced in the course of the season.

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