The Grain Millers Association of Zimbabwe says it will shun maize imports and buy 800 000 metric tonnes of white maize harvested under the Command Agriculture programme.
Association chairman, Tafadzwa Musarara, also blasted maize buyers who were buying at an unviable price, urging government to immediately take action.
“GMAZ wish to reiterate its commitment that it is going to shun maize imports and buy 800 000 metric tonnes of white maize harvested under the Command Agriculture and the Presidential Inputs Scheme,’’ Musarara said.
“GMAZ is greatly disturbed with recent reports of middlemen buying maize at an unviable price of $100 per metric tonne. These prices will, undoubtedly, impoverish the farmers and more importantly, debilitate the momentum so far gained in the maize production.”
He said the millers and government were in the process of finalising all key maize buying arrangements and in particular the payment of maize to farmers.
These arrangements are expected to be finalised and put in place by May 22, 2017.
He said GMAZ was in full support of the government announced price of $390 per metric tonne to farmers, which is viable and promote maize farming in the country.
“It is an offence to buy maize without a valid license or permit from the Agricultural Marketing Authority. We implore AMA to conduct a crackdown on those illegal and unscrupulous maize grown under the Command Agriculture or private contract farming,” Musarara added. zifmnews.com