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Saturday, 27 April 2019 09:54

FOL tips farmers on post harvest management

Written by  Memory Kutengule
Chilumpha demonstrating some of the innovations for handling crop produce Chilumpha demonstrating some of the innovations for handling crop produce

BLANTYRE, April 27: Farmers Organisation Limited (FOL) has advised small and large scale farmers in the country to use innovative ways of handling crop produce to reduce post harvest loses.

Recently, Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development released second round of crop production estimates that projected a maize surplus of 335, 000 metric ton (mt) with total production pegged at 3.35 million mt.

In an interview with Malawi News Agency on Thursday, FOL  National Sale and Marketing Manager Ronald Chilumpha  said much as the country will have  a surplus of 335, 000 mt, it is bound to lose 840,000 mt  which translates to Kl00 billion at the current maize price, due to poor handling of crop produce.

He then said: “we believe post harvest losses can be mitigated by improving post harvest practices such as the use of Actellic Gold Trust, a new product of controlling larger grain borer in cereals such as maize.

This product gives over nine months grain protection against larger grain borer and ordinary weevils. Actellic God Trust also has addressed the problem of pest resistance which has come due to prolonged use and misuse of other products on the market.”

Chilumpha also added that the organization has also in stock chemicals such as Novatellic Super and Aluminium Phosphide for larger scale farmers and grain traders.

He then urged farmers to adopt innovative solutions for managing crop produce noting that if deployed and use appropriately could reduce the post harvest losses significantly thereby achieving food security at household and nation level at large.

“Actellic Gold Trust, Novatellic Super and Aluminium Phosphide products can be accessed everywhere. As such, let us access the products to protect our produce so as to sustainably feed the growing population,” he said.

Research findings indicate that for every I00 bags of maize, about 25 bags are lost during post harvest handling and storage, according to Chilumpha.