GMB owes farmers over US$6 million | The Herald

via GMB owes farmers over US$6 million | The Herald January 14, 2014

The Grain Marketing Board owes farmers more than US$6,1 million thereby disrupting farming operations, Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development Minister Joseph Made has said.
The minister also revealed that Government would not extend financial assistance to farmers for the winter wheat crop, saying the era of handouts was over.

Minister Made said delays by Treasury in releasing money to GMB had, however, hampered farming activities.
Minister Made said GMB’s grain procurement scheme is wholly funded by Government to boost the national strategic grain reserve.
“The situation has left many farmers troubled as many were yet to pay back loans that they borrowed from banks and the loans have already accumulated interest,” he added.

Government is targeting to put 1,6 million hectares of land under maize to produce 2,2 million tonnes for domestic consumption.
But some farmers have scaled down maize production because GMB takes up to two years to pay them and at rates that are lower than those offered by private buyers.

Further, Government pays higher prices for imported maize than it does to local farmers through the GMB.
On winter wheat, Minister Made said farmers should start approaching banks for financing now.

“Government is preparing for the winter wheat programme but farmers should not sit back and wait for handouts.
“It is the duty of every farmer to start approaching banks and other supporting institutions for resources. Farmers and the private sector should be pre-occupied with preparations for the winter cropping season as there will not be free handouts,” he said.

“We want to create a sense of ‘nothing for free’. We want farmers to make an effort or at least we put in the aspect of a down payment. Farmers should understand that even though we are under sanctions, they should work hard and pay for services,” he said.

Under the stop-order system that Government appears to be favouring, farmers get inputs and service on credit and the money is deducted from them at point of sale.

Wheat production continues on a downward trend, declining from 33 700 tonnes in 2012 to 24 700 tonnes in 2013.
Last year Government wanted to raise US$88,4 million to produce 160 000 tonnes of wheat but failed.

Grain millers who promised to fund wheat production withdrew at the last minute citing the absence of a regulatory framework to guide the contract system.

Some farmers complained that the US$400 per tonne offered by the GMB was not viable considering high production costs of up to US$1 200 per hectare.




  • comment-avatar
    mark longhurst 8 years ago

    Made, minister for agriculture overseer of the destruction of Zims ag output now blames the individuals on the ground for non production , what have you been doing other than feathering your own nest for the last 30 years, you really are a d!ckhead and if it wasn’t for stolen votes you would also be one of those farmers struggling to make a living….vote him out!!

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    Mixed Race 8 years ago

    Now is the time to see who is the real farmer and not!Those who occupied land expecting the government to keep on pouring agricultural inputs with zero production are now caught in the realities of worsening economy.The government cannot afford to allow you to hold it a ransom any more.You have only two choices-1-leave the land and settle as a squatter 2-go to the bank or sell your 4×4 wheel drive car to raise funds.I fully support the minister on this new move to make people learn to depend on themselves NOT begging all the time.

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    Mixed Race 8 years ago

    ps-at ransom NOT A RANSOM

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    600 million more like it misappropriated. Get your facts right. Made is the arch buffoon premier classes extraordinaire

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    “Farmers should understand that even though we have taken away their ability to get loans, to receive fair payment in a timely way, to be educated in best farming practices and to think about contributing to the greater good because we (ZANU-PF) obviously don’t, and that under the imaginary sanctions that we blame for our own stupidity… they should just work harder and pay for services because we have no idea how to fix things,” he said.

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    30 years of excuses! #4 years down the line and we are importing? And they can’t see something ain’t right!