Anita Jere in her maize field

National

Hunger alert: Malawi’s maize production goes down

By Luke Bisani

August 31, 2018

Malawi’s Ministry of Agriculture Irrigation and Water Development has disclosed that maize production has gone down, a development that poses a risk of hunger in the country.

Through its final survey, the ministry has disclosed that estimated maize production in the 2017/18 growing season is at 2,697,959 metric tonnes representing a 22.1 percent decrease as compared to 2015/16 final estimated surge of maize production that projected 3,464,139 metric tonnes.

Maize production down.

Rice production is reported to have gone down in the farming year of 2017/18, the same as millet and wheat whose estimates show a decline of 12.2 and 2.2 percent respectively.

Soya beans, Pigeon Peas and beans are also among crops that are reported to have given low figures on production.

However, the survey shows that horticulture crops have increased in production, among them being pineapples, mangoes, tomatoes and tangerines.

Livestock production is also reported to have gone up.

Dry spells and armyworms are said to have been the cause of the decline in maize production in the farming year of 2017/18.

Meanwhile, Malawi is yet to deal with armyworms as no reliable pesticide to kill the worms has been identified.