Chakwera wants wheat imports reduced and save forex

By Alfred Chauwa

Malawi President Dr Lazarus McCarthy Chakwera has hailed Pyxus Agriculture Limited for promoting wheat production in the country saying this has the potential to help Malawi save much needed forex.

Chakwera said: “We will also reduce wheat import by half thereby saving close to US$20 million worth of forex demand,” he said.

Chakwer was speaking in Dowa at Mpale Wheat Farm managed by Pyxus Agriculture Limited in Dowa while on his way to Kasungu, for the official launch of the 2023/24 Affordable Inputs Program (AIP).

President Chakwera

During the stopover at the farm, he witnessed the first large harvest of the wheat.

“While there, I witnessed the first large-scale harvest of wheat seed under a revolutionary agro-industrialisation intervention that seeks to upscale wheat production in the country, ” he said.

The president said he also learnt that the four seed varieties tried on this farm are heat tolerant such that they can be grown in almost all climatic conditions in Malawi; and are high yielding reaching between 6.8 metric tonnes and 10 metric tonnes per hectare.

Chakwera said, using mega farms for full-scale wheat production will give Malawi expected total wheat yield of 90,000 metric tonnes which is nearly 50 percent of the country’s annual wheat consumption.

Malawi has been importing wheat at large scale losing forex in the process.