Government says it has reached out to over 86% of the total beneficiaries of the Affordable Inputs Programme (AIP) in the 2020-2021 farming season.
Spokesperson in the Ministry of Agriculture Grecian Lungu has told us that over 3 million intended beneficiaries have accessed the farm inputs.
“As were closing the markets yesterday, we had reached out to over 86% of the beneficiaries whereby this 86% represents to around 3, 240, 000 farmers which means by yesterday we have sold about 6, 480, 000 bags of fertilizer to farmers who were targeted in this year`s AIP,” outlined Lungu.
He added that the Ministry has also managed to reach out beneficiaries in hard to reach areas who were previously put off due to geographical setting challenges.
“We have been trying all means to reach out to these farmers in hard to reach areas, we have been engaging our suppliers to venture into mobile selling, through this intervention we have managed to reach out to most of the farmers,” said Lungu.
The programme, which was earlier intended to benefit registered 4, 279, 100 farming households in the country, saw a reduction in the said beneficiaries to 3, 675, 972 after a database cleanup.
According to the Ministry, upon completion of the programme, each farming household will have access to two 50 kilograms (kgs) of fertilizer at a price of K4, 495 and five kg seeds at K2, 000.
Each smallhoder farmer is entitled to access a 50-kilogram bag of NPK; a 50-kilogram bag of Urea; either 5-kilogram of maize seed or 7 kilograms of sorghum or 7 kilograms of rice seed, depending on the farmer’s preference.