Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development on Friday said it has enhanced roles for farmers in the 2017-2018 cotton marketing season.

Executive Director for Cotton Malawi, Cosmas Luwanda told the press that the marketing season will open on April 27, 2018 and will run for 90 Calendar days.

"The farm gate price for the seed cotton for 2018 marketing season is K375:00 per kg.

The price has been arrived at through a rigorous consultative process with industry stakeholders taking into account the cost of production and prevailing international market prices" said Luwanda.

He said that in order to properly regulate the function of the market and protect the interest of seed cotton growers and buyers alike, the ministry has put regulations that shall enforce to guide cotton marketing.

"Pursuant to the provisions of the cotton act 2013(45), buying of the seed cotton will only be done at the centres designated by the cotton council of Malawi. Any other cotton buyer who contravenes the order will commits an offence under the cotton act, 2013," Luwanda stated.

President of Cotton Farmers Association, Godfrey Ching'oma said that only the licensed people would be allowed to buy cotton seed.

"People found buying seed cotton at non-designated place and/or without a buying license, commits an offence under the cotton act, 2013. Over 220 marketing posts have been designated across the country at which seed cotton is going to be traded," he explained

Ching'oma added that introducing the minimum farm gate prices for the selected crops 2017/18 season as follows; Maize 150kwacha/kg, polished rice at 530 kwacha/kg , unshelled groundnuts at 290 kwacha/kg ,Soya beans at 280 kwacha/kg is one way of making the farmers to benefit from their farm produce.

Ching'oma urged farmers not to sale their crops to vendors but to certified market where they would have more profit.


Source: Malawi News Agency