Agricultural experts have advised the government to come up with proper modalities to help the country have sufficient food, as this year’s Affordable input program (AIP) has been marred with numerous challenges that have the potential to significantly lower the country’s total crop yield.
The remarks by Tamani Nkhono Mvula and Felix Jumbe come as the program has, among others, seen beneficiaries failing to redeem the inputs due to network and logistical problems.
The duo has also noticed that most areas are yet to access the Urea fertilizer, which is crucial in contributing to the crop production.
According to Jumbe, this year’s AIP has not been impressive, a situation he says will contribute to low total crop yield for the country.
Jumbe suggests that the country should seriously venture into irrigation in order to supplement the gap of the yield that will not be realized as a result of AIP problems.
On the other hand, Nkhono Mvula is of the view that farmers should engage in winter cropping as well as planting of other crops that do not need fertilizer like cassava.
Mvula has since advised the government to consider revamping ADMARC by providing enough funds, so as to enable the state grain trader to come on the market as soon as possible.
Meanwhile, reports show that only 30 percent of farm inputs under this year’s AIP which was budgeted at 188 billion kwacha has been redeemed.