The Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition (CiZC) has criticised the government over the newly gazetted prices for summer produce saying they are too low.
In a statement seen by NewZimbabwe.com, CiZC said the new government prices signify actions of a robber government “whose intent is to rob farmers and peasants of the produce of their swear and hard work”. Further reads the statement:
In addition, such moves will not only work to drive grain production down, but inherently leave the farmer poorer after each season.
These grains form the staple diet and starch for the majority of Zimbabweans, acting both as a food source and store which are key for national food security.
The newly gazetted producer prices do not make economic sense for the farmer who has to increasingly rely on the private market to obtain inputs timely so as to safeguard and control production.
Statistics show that in June 2022, the price of fertilizers increased by over 71 percent and a 50kg bag of Ammonium Nitrate (AN) fertilizer was costing between US$75 and US$94.00 while a 50kg bag of Compound D fertilizer was costing around US$35.00. In the same month, a 25kg bag of seed maize was costing between $30 000 and $42 000 in local currency and this translates to between US$30.00 to US$42.00.
The new floor producer prices were set as follows:
a). Maize and traditional – $100 000 per tonne, up from $75 000.
b). Soya beans – $228 660, up from $171,495,
c). Sunflower – $274,392 a tonne, up from $205 794,52.
According to the World Food Programme (WFP), more than five million Zimbabweans are facing hunger and the situation could get worse if farmers withhold their produce over low prices being offered by the Grain Marketing Board (GMB) at low prices.
The GMB has in the past delayed paying farmers, a situation that was undesirable in an inflationary economy.