First year of PF agriculture season records huge drop, many will need relief food

Government has disclosed that majority maize producing areas in Zambia have recorded a huge drop in the production of the cereal.

The Southern province, which was once the country’s food basket for many years, recorded the largest maize production slump this year.

Ceremonial Vice President Guy Scott disclosed this in parliament on Friday when he presented a statement on the 2012/2013 in-depth vulnerability and needs assessment.

Scott said Southern province recorded 21 percent maize production drop, making it the highest province out of the nine to record production drop.

He said erratic rainfall and the invasion of arm worms in most parts of the country were the contributing factors to the slump of maize production in the 2012-2013 farming season.

Scott further told parliament that a total of 209, 498 people from 34, 916 households will be provided with relief food support amounting to 12, 570 metric tonnes.

The Vice President explained that 18 districts will benefit from the relief food support for eight months commencing on 1st August 2013 to 31st March 2014.

He further stated that 20 percent of the relief food support will fall under general food distribution for the chronically vulnerable while 80 percent will be food for work.

Scott revealed that the Disaster Management and Mitigation Unit (DMMU) was further monitoring the food security situation in 18 other districts that were on the borderlines.

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