|Cotton prices deadlock|
|Friday, 15 June 2012 12:00|
COTTON deliveries finally started this week without an agreed price structure, following a deadlock on minimum prices between farmers and buyers. In the absence of the traditional pricing structure, prices would be determined on a negotiated basis between farmers and cotton merchants. Cotton growers wanted a minimum price of US45c per kg while buyers, who contracted the bulk of the current crop, were offering US29c.
“The crop has started flowing in and estimates put the current deliveries at about 6 million kg,” said a source familiar with the developments.
“We had our last meeting on Tuesday but we still failed to agree on prices,” he said.
Zimbabwe Commercial Farmers’ Union vice-president Ms Maideyi Maswi said the meeting did not come up with good news for the farmers.
“We did not agree,” she said. “The meeting was too tense. As farmers, we are saying at least US$0,45 per kg for grade D and US$0,55 per kg for grade A,” she said.
She added that the ginners maintained their initial position, offering US$0,29 and US$0,40 for the lowest and highest grades respectively.
Ms Maswi said cotton deliveries had started but she urged farmers to sell to any willing buyer.
“By opening the season we are not saying farmers should start to sell with the prices being offered by the ginners,” she said.
She said another meeting would be held on June 22 to ascertain the market forces.
Globally, cotton farmers experience similar challenges with producer prices. But some countries, such as the United States of America, have managed to keep their farmers in production by providing subsidies.