Government says it has increased beneficiaries of the newly introduced Affordable Inputs Programme (AIP) which has replaced the Farm Input Subsidy Programme (FISP).
Addressing a news conference in Lilongwe, the responsible Minister for Agriculture and Food Security Lobin Lowe said the programme intends to benefit 4.2 million farming households in the country.
According to Lowe, each farming household will have access to two 50 kilograms of fertilizer at a price of K4, 495 and five kilogram seeds at K2, 000.
“A farmer will benefit two bags of fertilizer and a pack of certified seeds, the objective is to make sure that this particular plants certified seed and apply fertilizer, this package is enough for an acre,” said Lowe.
The Agriculture Minister added that the programme will assist in realizing food security at household level in order to reduce poverty in the country.
“We are trying to look at priorities and we are now considering food security and poverty at that level so what we have done that to make sure that a household is food secure and that household has something to save so we are now introducing AIP,” said Lowe.
Government has since expressed optimism that the programme will be enrolled in September this year as it has some stock in the country.
Previously, the abolished FISP used to target 1 million farming households across the country and it received widespread criticism that the programme was reaching out to intended beneficiaries.