THE high price of fertiliser of about K250 for a 50-kilogramme (kg) bag is likely to impact negatively on crop production in the 2015/16 farming season, some farmers say.
Some Kapiri Mposhi farmers said if unchecked, the prices will have an adverse effect on their income and crop yields.
According to the Zambia National Farmers’ Union (ZNFU) weekly brief, the increase in prices is likely to make it difficult for farmers to buy inputs on cash basis on the market.
“Farmers are worried about the rise in fertiliser prices. The current trading prices on the market are in the range of K245 and K248 for a 50 kg bag, which is way higher than last years.
“The farmers have bemoaned the high fertiliser prices will affect them as this has come after a season of poor rainfall which has resulted in low production and consequently, low income,” ZNFU says.
Meanwhile, ZNFU says the Bunjimi Asset Plus loan facility has received overwhelming response in Namwala.
The Bunjimi Asset Plus loan facility is jointly facilitated by the ZNFU and the National Savings and Credit Bank (NATSAVE) to promote access to affordable finance and equipment to small-scale farmers among other components.
ZNFU says a good number of farmers in the district have so far applied under the scheme to acquire various farm assets such as hammer mills, irrigation systems and dairy animals.
Under the scheme, NATSAVE Livingstone has bought 15 dairy livestock and is expected to hand over the animals to the beneficiaries in Namwala next week.