Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development has projected low farm yields following its 2014/15 second Agricultural Production Estimate survey.
Minister of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development, Dr Allan Chiyembekeza told Tuesday in Lilongwe today that the decline is mainly attributed to floods and prolonged dry spell that the country has experienced in the course of the season.
According to the Ministerial survey, the results show that maize production has decreased from 3,978,123 metric tons realized in 2013/2014 agricultural season to 2,898,123 metric tons in the current agricultural season. This represents 27.7 percent decline in production. The results also show decreases in other major food crops such as rice (13.6%, millet 11.9%, cassava 1.1%, sorghum 9.3 %).
However, potatoes and sweet potatoes have increased by 5.9% and 4.4% respectively. However, Chiyembekeza has assured Malawians that his ministry is putting some possible mechanisms to turn away from hunger. “The national maize requirement for the country is approximately 3 million metric tons “My Ministry has put in place several mitigation measures to avert looming hunger including promoting the growing of cassava and sweet potato Program as a response to the floods and dry spells and distributing agricultural inputs such as irrigation equipments”, said Chiyembekeza.