The grain reserve now holds 120 000 tonnes after the Grain Marketing Board (GMB) received 50 000 metric tonnes from farmers, Finance minister Patrick Chinamasa has said.
Source: Maize reserves enough for five months – NewsDay Zimbabwe June 23, 2016
BY VICTORIA MTOMBA
Chinamasa told NewsDay yesterday that Treasury has paid all farmers for maize deliveries, adding that the reserves would last four to five months.
“We do not owe anybody and have received 50 000 tonnes of maize. We never anticipated any maize this season,” he said.
In February, the government launched a $1,5 billion food aid appeal to feed an estimated three million people following the El Nino-induced drought that affected southern African countries.
Government said it was addressing the national deficit of 700 000 tonnes of maize through imports of grain from a number of countries, with the help of the private sector.
Farmers have been crying foul over late disbursements of funds by government when they deliver maize to GMB.
Last week, the Grain Millers Association of Zimbabwe said the maize supply was now stable and adequate to address the food crisis induced by drought as millers have imported more than 300 000 metric tonnes of maize.
In an interview with NewsDay, GMAZ president, Tafadzwa Musarara said his organisation was importing maize from Mexico, Ukraine, Thailand and Brazil.
“We have imported in excess of 300 000 metric tonnes and the country’s maize supply is stable and more than adequate. The market is promised of stable prices and constant supply. In fact, there is cut-throat competition,” he said.