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National Food Reserve Agency to start maize purchase

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By Emmanuel Simpokolwe:

The National Food Reserve Agency (NFRA) has said it has received an approval from the Public Procurement and Disposal of Assets Authority (PPDA) to procure maize in the country.

Making the announcement in Lilongwe on Monday, NFRA Board Chairperson Denis Kalekeni said the agency will buy maize from 185 registered farmer cooperatives and associations.

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Kalekeni said the maize, which will be bought at farm gate of K220 per kilogramme, is for the replenishment of the Strategic Grain Reserve (SGR).

Kalekeni said the Agency has K12 billion which was allocated in the budget to procure about 50,000 metric tones for the SGR.

He said the 185 cooperatives have been selected based on a number of criteria including having valid registration with the Register of Cooperatives Society under the Co-operative Societies Act of the Laws of Malawi.

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He said apart from the cooperatives the agency will also open mobile markets country wide for farmer groups with small quantities that cannot afford to transport their maize to the depots.

“The Government’s intention is to capacitate and protect the farmers. The process has been designed to ensure that there is no penetration from the vendors and traders,” Kalekeni said.

Beside the mobile market, the maize will be procured at Kanengo Silos in Lilongwe, Kazomba Depot in Mzimba, Limbe Depot in Blantyre, Mangochi Silos and Bangula Depot in Nsanje.

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