By A Correspondent- The Grain Marketing Board (GMB) has attributed delayed payments of wheat farmers to pressure at its few grading facilities.
GMB speaks after farmers have been complaining over delays in payments with others saying they delivered their crop to GMB depots last month.
The parastatal is buying ordinary wheat at $43 778,84 per tonne, while grade A wheat will be paid a premium price of $52 534,61 per tonne.
Speaking about the delays in paying farmers, GMB chief executive Mr Rockie Mutenha said efforts were underway to make sure the situation is rectified.
This year we are grading into premium and utility grades.
We are grading from only five grading points using machines to achieve the correct protein and falling number levels.
This is putting a bit of pressure on us. This is why we have a challenge, but we are trying to make sure the situation is managed.
Farmers have continued to deliver their wheat and to date we have received 140 406 tonnes of wheat from farmers. This is an increase from the 43 145 tonnes that had been delivered to GMB depots during the same period last year.
In a recent statement to GMB, Mazowe North legislator, Campion Mugweni, urged GMB to deal with the payment delays so that farmers will also have very little pressure since the 2020-2021 farming season has already approached.
Mugweni who is also a member of the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Lands, Agriculture, Water and Rural Resettlement alleged that several farmers from his area who had delivered their wheat a month ago were still waiting to receive their money.
The legislator also argued that the delays in payments could discourage them from sending their crop to GMB.
More: The Herald