GMB to pay early for grain deliveries

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Business Reporter
THE Grain Marketing Board is working on measures to start paying farmers for grain deliveries “within the shortest possible time”.

This comes amid reports that some farmers were not keen to sell their grain to GMB as the parastatal was taking long to pay for deliveries.

It is understood that farmers who have fallen for the false reports are reportedly now selling to unscrupulous dealers at between $200 and $240, which is a far cry from the $390 that GMB is paying.

In a statement over the weekend, GMB general manager Mr Rockie Mutenha implored farmers to ignore the false reports.

Mr Mutenha called upon farmers to deliver more grain crops including small grains and soya beans to GMB.

GMB is buying maize and red sorghum, white sorghum, rapoko and millet at a uniform price of $390 per tonne.

“The GMB wishes to inform farmers that it is still accepting deliveries of grain crops including small grains and soya beans.

“Efforts are being made to pay farmers who would have delivered their grain to the GMB within the shortest possible time. We therefore encourage farmers to continue delivering grain crops at any GMB depots and collection points,” said Mr Mutenha.

Mr Mutenha’s remarks come at a time when the social media was awash with messages that GMB was no longer accepting any more grains as “silos are now full”.

It is understood that a combination of unscrupulous elements– in particular those criticizing the Government’s Command Agriculture programme– and some individuals wanting to make a quick buck by buying maize at lower prices before reselling at $390 per tonne to GMB,  were peddling the false information.

Sources say critics of Command Agriculture want fewer farmers to deliver maize to GMB and effectively create artificial shortages, which would then be used as indications that the maize import substitution programme had failed.

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