Government has asked tobacco buyers to offer farmers good prices in this year’s tobacco marketing season, saying farmers have suffered for a long time due to low prices.
The plea was made by the Minister of Agriculture Lobin Lowe on Friday as the Tobacco Commission registered a Tobacco buyer in the name of Protrade Group Limited at the Capital Hill in Lilongwe.
Speaking with reporters, Lowe said that the coming in of buyers simply means that there will be a competition on the market which will enable farmers to sell their crop in larger quantity and at a good price.
He added that the unveiling of indigenous companies is also very encouraging because the buyers will be able to know Malawian farmers which clearly shows that 2023 is going to bring more buyers.
“Tobacco Commission has done a good job by making sure that they qualify for the licence. The issue of market is about the leaf. They should be mindful of the quality because sometimes farmers mix grades of tobacco. My message to the farmer is that they should make sure that they have graded their tobacco so that they can sell it at a good price,” he said.
On his part, Chief Executive Officer for Tobacco Commission Chidanti Malunga said the commission wants to see the company grow to set an example for the coming generation and asked farmers to be prepared for the market.
On his part, Protrade Group Limited Managing Director Lodzani Fatchi said that they are more than ready to buy Tobacco this year and they believe that they are going to add value to the Tobacco industry.
Fatchi added that looking at the estimate and number of buyers, they are expecting to buy not less 10 Million kilograms of tobacco.
“We have everything in place and we are ready to go to the market, we have buyers all over the country so we think what we have got we will be able to participate and succeed,” he explained.