Independent tobacco growers stranded with crop

Independent tobacco growers in Eastern Province are stuck with their tobacco due to lack of market.

This has worried EFAZ, Eastern Fodya Association of Zambia.

Speaking to Breeze News, EFAZ Provincial Chairperson, Franklin Mwale says that this is unfortunate especially that the country has recorded low volumes of the crop.

Mr Mwale says that it is worrying that three weeks have passed from the time the crop marketing season opened but independent tobacco growers have not sold any crop.

He says that this is the third year running for Eastern Province to experience lack of tobacco buyers to buy
tobacco from the independent farmers.

Mr Mwale has appealed to TBZ, the Tobacco Board of Zambia to quickly address the situation.

He says that it is important for TBZ to start searching for market for next year’s tobacco marketing and further advice farmers which type of tobacco to grow.

And Mr Mwale has wondered why Zambia is the only country in the region where Tobacco merchants buy contracted tobacco first leaving the independent tobacco.

He says that in Malawi and Zimbabwe Tobacco merchants buy contracted tobacco alongside independent grown tobacco.

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