Farmers will now get a 30 percent bonus, taking prices for maize and traditional grains to over $16 000 a tonne, if they deliver to the Grain Marketing Board (GMB) before the end of July.
Those who have already delivered grain since April 1 will also be paid the bonus.
Farmers have welcomed the bonus saying it would boost viability of growing maize and traditional grains.
Cabinet recently approved the 30 percent incentive on the floor producer price for maize and traditional grains for deliveries made between April 1 and July 31, 2020.
GMB chief executive Mr Rockie Mutenha yesterday confirmed that prices had now been adjusted and details of the bonus scheme communicated to all GMB depots.
“The 30 percent incentive means farmers will now be getting a producer price of $16 028 per tonne of maize delivered, while the price for the traditional grains will now be $16 725 per tonne,” he said.
Initially, the maize producer price was set at $12 327 per tonne while the traditional grains were selling at $12 865 per tonne.
Mr Mutenha said farmers had continued to deliver grain to the GMB depots and collection points across the country.
“As at Thursday, we had received 28 810 tonnes of maize, 782 tonnes of soyabeans, 312 tonnes of sorghum and 50 tonnes of millet. We encourage farmers to deliver their grain to the GMB and take advantage of the lucrative prices. We are paying within two to three days of delivery,” he said.
GMB has established collection points nearer to farmers to minimise transport costs and curb congestion at the depots in keeping with lockdown regulations.
Mr Mutenha said grain moisture standards were being enforced as they were critical to ensure long-term storability and minimal post-harvest losses. Farmers are also encouraged to use ultra violet protected grain storage bags, which are available at GMB depots as the packaging material helps in meeting the required standards and reduces post-harvest losses.
Meanwhile, farmers have welcomed the move by Government to incentivise those who deliver their grain early.
Indigenous Commercial Farmers Union president Mrs Mayiwepi Jiti said the move was a noble one as it would cushion farmers from inflation.
“It is a very good move, considering that $12 329 is now equivalent to US$176, which is way below the parallel market price of maize. Farmers are selling on the parallel market where they risk being duped by unscrupulous dealers. Now that GMB is offering a higher price, more grain will go to the GMB. The GMB is now offering a fair price that will be attractive to most farmers,” she said.
Lands, Agriculture, Water and Rural Resettlement Minister Perrance Shiri recently encouraged farmers to deliver their grain to GMB depots so they get their money and prepare for the next season early.