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TCC predicts drop in tobacco production

The persistent dry spell especially in the southern region is likely to affect production of major crops, tobacco inclusive.

Most parts in the southern region have not experienced rain fall since the end of December.

This has, raised fears especially from the tobacco sector that the country might face a disaster if the dry spell continues.

Tobacco Control Commission (TCC) chief executive officer Albert Changaya said tobacco is likely to be heavily affected by the dry spells.

“As an industry, we are worried that the crop might be affected if the current situation continues,” said Changaya.

He said TCC will deploy an assessment team next week to examine the situation.

Changaya, said, however following some drizzles in the central region, the crop has revived and showing positive signs.

“With our assessment team out next week, we should have a good assessment by end January,” he said.

Last week, Tobacco Association of Malawi (Tama) president Reuben Maigwa said even though most farmers have grown the crop, production will be compromised.

“The main threat is that we may not produce sufficient crop which will further be marred by poor quality,” he said.

Last year, Malawi saw tobacco earnings dropping by 8 percent to US$337.3 million, from US$366.3 million.

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