“For cereals, there is an increase in maize production of 8.8% from 3,391,924 metric tonnes in 2018/2019 growing season to 3,691,866 in the 2019/2020 growing season,’ the Ministry said in a statement.
The Ministry attributes the increase to “favourable weather conditions and increased uptake of inputs by farmers.”
On the other hand rice production has increased by 9.8%, millet 8.9% and sorghum at 3%, saying “all this due to availability of seed, increased wetlands and Government and other stakeholder programmes.”
Legumes like groundnuts, soya, pigeon peas and beans have also seen an increase in production of about 9.15% on average.
On cotton, the Ministry said most of all cotton production has also increased tremendously from 25,331 metric tonnes in 2018/2019 to 52,389 metric tonnes in 2019/2020 growing season representing a 106.8% increase due to intensive promotion campaigns, favourable weather, seed availability and good market arrangements.
On roots and tubers, the Ministry said there is also an increase in production with bananas at 5.9%, potatoes at 19.4% and cassava at 0.9%.
The Ministry noted there has been an increase in livestock production with cattle at 4%, pigs 7.7%, sheep 3.2%, goats 7.5%, rabbits 5.5% and quails at 192.5%. “This can be attributed to an increase in births due to improved livestock management practices like good housing, feeding, breeding and disease control.”
FISH PRODUCTION DECREASES
The Ministry says fish production has seen a decrease from 202, 092 metric tonnes to 169,140 metric tonnes representing a 19.1% decrease.
“Large scale capture has gone down from 2,271 MT in 2018/2019 to 2,109.57MT in 2019/2020. Small scale capture has decreased from 198,944.93 MT in 2018/2019 to 158,264.75MT in 2019/2020.
“The decrease has been due to low catches, migration of fish and severe water stress. On the other hand aquaculture production has been on the increase from 7876MT in 2018/2019 season to 8766MT in 2019/2020 season for both large scale and small scale aquaculture.”
Since November 2019 to January 2020 the country has received good rainfall and this is expected till March 2020.
The Ministry will be carrying out 2nd and 3rd round of Agric cultural Production Estimates Survey in March and May 2020 and the results will be made available to the all Malawians and other stakeholders.
The final estimates will determine actual production and confirm whether Malawi would be food secure at both household and National Levels.
In case of disasters, the Ministry will revise the production estimates and update the nation accordingly, the statement concluded.