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FRA urges millers to buy maize from local farmers

The Food Reserve Agency (FRA) is urging millers countrywide to buy adequate stocks of maize during this year’s on-going crop marketing season in order to sustain their business operations and reduce their dependence on FRA.

According to a statement released by FRA’s Public Relations Coordinator John Chipambwe, the agency has observed that despite the on-going crop marketing season and the stable supply of maize on the local market, some millers have continued making maize purchase applications to the FRA.  

Therefore, Mr. Chipambwe advised the millers to buy maize directly from the farmers or from the local market while the stock is still available, saying that FRA is no longer selling maize to millers.

“The crop marketing season is currently in progress and the agency is aware that players in the milling sector are buying maize from the local market, as a result, the agency does not expect millers to be making maize purchase applications,” Mr. Chipambwe said.  

Mr. Chipambwe further reminded the millers of their critical role in sustaining the national food security and also advised them to buy adequate maize to sustain their businesses as well.

Meanwhile National Union of Small Scale Farmers in Zambia NUSFAZ) Executive Director Ebony Lolozi, said the millers have to compete with FRA in purchasing the commodity by offering a much better price instead of applying to the agency to purchase the maize.

“What has always been happening is that FRA will set the price and other market players will follow suit by competing with the agency through offering a much higher price than FRA,” Mr. Lolozi said.

Mr. Lolozi said the move by FRA to not sell maize to millers will benefit farmers because millers and grain traders will be trying to buy as much maize as possible, hence offering better prices to local farmers.

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