FRA urged to give it position on maize procurement

 FRA urged to give it position on maize procurement

By ALICE NACHILEMBE
The Centre for Trade Policy and Development (CTPD) has called on the Food Reserve Agency (FRA) to give its full position on maize procurement in this marketing season.

CTPD Trades and Development Researcher Emmanuel Muma said the center is concerned that hundreds of bags of maize belonging to small scale farmers are going to waste.
Mr Muma said that at some named Food Reserve Agency (FRA) depot in various districts due to lack of proper warhorses or sheds are going to waste.

He said CTPD that over the years, several bags of maize grain are usually stored outside FRA depots covered with tarpaulin tents and subjected to the sun an indication of lack of storage facilities by the Agency.

Mr Muma said FRA should limit its purchases to its capacity because clearly it does not have adequate storage facilities with improved technologies to support grain or food storage for a longer period of time.

He said a close check across the country reveals that most FRA storage facilities including silos are in a deplorable state and do not have adequate modern technological equipment.

“We therefore urge Government to consider conducting an analysis of FRA’s storage capacity, including the state and conditions of the storage structures.

“Storage facilities should be constructed to bridge the gap and maintenance of the existing storage structures and ensure that they are equipped with modern technological facilities,” he said.

Mr Muma said these measures will help to create a clear coordinated mechanism that realistically takes into account the capacity of the FRA and reduce recklessness in government expenditure.