AgricultureBusiness and Finance

FUM backs AIP’s fertilizer price adjustments

Lilongwe, September 23, Mana: Farmers’ Union of Malawi (FUM) says government is justified to raise redeeming fees for fertilizers in the Affordable Inputs Program (AIP) from K4, 495 to K7, 500 for a 50kg bag.

In an interview on Wednesday, FUM’s President, Frighton Njolomole, said the justification of the adjustment is very clear as the product’s prices have skyrocketed on the international market.

“It’s very good to note that government has affirmed its position- that it has maintained the number of farming households who benefited in 2020-21 season as 3,788,105. 

“Fertilizer is not only expensive in Malawi but also on the international market, moreover, the country does not produce fertilizer, so, importation costs into the country are again another factor necessitating the adjustments,” he said.

Njolomole then advised farmers across the country to avoid abusing the opportunity that government has provided.

“We further commend government’s plans to promote goat rearing in some districts. We ask farmers to utilize this chance and start thinking of graduating from dependence on AIP,” he advised. 

Minister of Agriculture, Lobin Lowe, announced that out of the 3,744,105 farming households who will be covered in AIP in the 2021-22 season, 30, 000 will engage in livestock production while 3,714,105 farming households will be in crop production.

Mwapata Policy Institute Research expert, Christone Nyondo, has since said government has no control over the cost of fertilizers as the product keeps increasing in price on the market.

On her part, Civil Society Agriculture Network (CISANET) Executive Director, Pamela Kuwali, said government and other stakeholders should jointly work to address the common challenges that have been registered in the previous years.

“Being a huge investment, every effort should be made to ensure that the program is successful and farmers benefit,” she said.

Mana

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