Wheat price reviewed upwards

HARARE – The government has approved an upward review of the wheat flour producer price to $55 517,69 per metric tonne for ordinary grade wheat at a 15 percent return on investment, and $66 621,22 per metric tonne for premium grade wheat for the 2021 marketing season.

In a post-Cabinet briefing on Tuesday, Lands, Agriculture, Fisheries, Water and Rural Resettlement Minister Dr Anxious Masuka, who is also the Acting Chairperson of the Cabinet Committee on Food Security and Nutrition, said this move will help enable farmers to go back into production.

“The upward review of the producer prices is being necessitated by changes in input prices which in turn resulted in higher production costs.

“Farmers expect viability in their operations, and are grappling with cost increases in Labour (51 percent; fertilizers, both Compound D and Ammonium Nitrate (27 percent); and tractor and equipment (144 percent),” reads part of the statement.

He also said the input increases have a net effect of a 32 percent increase on the total variable cost per hectare.

“The net contribution of inputs to total wheat production costs in 2021 is as follows: labour, 3,19 percent; seed, 5,14 percent; fertilizers, 26,15 percent; chemicals, 3,20 percent; and operations, 12,37 percent.

The biggest driver of costs is the cost of borrowing which stands at 40 percent.”

Zimbabwe is anticipating output of more than 300 000 metric tonnes of the cereal, against a national annual requirement of 360 000 metric tonnes.

This is on the backdrop of the current national wheat stocks which stand at 70 000 metric tonnes, making Zimbabwe wheat self-sufficient for the first time since 2005.

Additionally, the Minister Masuka said, Government will avail the requisite funds to pay for deliveries. The harvesting of the wheat is expected to commence this week, and should be completed by mid-November 2021.

“The nation is also informed that the current subsidy framework to millers will be maintained.” – Sunday Mail