2018: A YEAR OF MAIZE BUMPER HARVEST!

2018: A YEAR OF MAIZE BUMPER HARVEST!

The National Maize Corporation (NMC) has beaten both last year’s record and its own projections of maize supplied to the company by farmers since April 2018. Chief Executive Officer Sabelo Msibi announced at last year’s National
Maize Competition (NAMCOM) Awards that a combination of factors, including contractual farming and intensive training of farmers, had worked favourably together to yield some 13000MT of maize supplied by farmers to the company at the last count. Over 9000MT of maize was supplied during the last cropping season, down by some 4000MT compared to 2018’s bumper harvest. It is anticipated that the margin will be even bigger as farmers continue to bring their maize to NMC. The CEO said these quantities had already beaten the year’s target of 12000MT, by 1000MT. The CEO just could not thank the farmers enough for their hard work. He also attributed the sharp increase in maize production to NMC’s initiative of taking expert farming knowledge to the farmers by utilising Area Farmer Development Officers, who were seconded to the organization by the Ministry of Agriculture last year. “The other factor that we believe has contributed to increased production is the formal contractual agreements we enter into with farmers stipulating that they produce maize solely for the NMC market. All this and more other initiatives that I may not single out one by one have positively impacted maize production in the country. As an organization, we would like to commend the ministry of Agriculture for continuing to make farming top priority. “It also emerged during the deliberations in the recent Sibaya that farming is one way in which the economy could be grown. May we all take it upon ourselves to play a significant role in ensuring that the country is self-sufficient in the area of food production.” The CEO said the tractor hire services and farm input subsidy program would significantly improve food security in the country. He said since they were commissioned by the ministry to oversee the program,
they had made good progress, highlighting though that they had encountered some challenges. In spite of these, Msibi assured attendants that farmers had received the services due to them. “Honourable Minister, we had hoped there would be an influx of private tractor owners who would want to take advantage of the opportunities
that had been availed; however, this was not the case. This has, however, not stopped the program from continuing as expected. May I urge tractor owners to still approach us as the opportunities are still available,” he said.
Msibi commended the ministry for its continued support of the National Maize Competition for the past 28 years. He thanked the ministry for trusting NMC to ably sponsor the competition.

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