Maize price expect low as fruit tree farmers languish with stock.

November 20, 2017

Plenty of food commodities both old stock and newly harvested ones were received in several major markets especially Kampala. In the maize grain sector, frustration continues to build as the market price drops lower to record low prices. Kisenyi dry grain market received old stock grain at Ugx.550-560/kg.

Traders slowed down their grain purchase because they are aware that price can only drop further lower with the expected bumper 2nd harvest at the close of the year. The traders in Kisenyi who are finally relocating to Mityana Road due to mushrooming structures being constructed in the area, were not happy with the margins realized currently as the maize price declined due to increased supply. They noted that demand for maize flour was low and it did not make business sense to stock the 1st season grain when the 2nd harvest grain was expected shortly.

The maize flour prices also declined to Ugx75,000-80,000 per 50kgs sack at wholesale in Kisenyi dry cereal market. Maize grain price has been forecasted to drop to Ugx.300/kg in Kampala by January 2018.

This low maize price was last recorded in Kampala back in 2008-2009. Kisenyi market registered maize at its lowest that year in the second week of February at Ugx.278/kg. According to Farmgain Africa’s archive, the maize price was similarly low the following year and the latest offer in the same market was recorded in the second week as business commenced that year at Ugx.300/kg.

In 2008 and 2009 the grain market prices got better in the 2nd seasons in November when the price increased to Ugx.800-900/kg at wholesale level. This price trend indicates that as we speculate the lowest price in Jan/Feb 2008, it will only be expected to increase or improve in Sept/Oct 2018 other factors constant. It is assumed that several farmers will most likely quit the maize value chain for another.

Apparently over 600MT of maize were bought daily throughout the week at Busia. Trading appears to have returned to normal, however, due to the abundant supply of old stock grain at Busia, price reduced further to Ksh.21/kg (Ugx.726). This year’s 2nd season maize harvest was also received from Bunyoli and Busoga in the same market. The newly harvested grain was bought at Ksh18/kg (Ugx.622) while the least acceptable quality at Ksh.17/kg (Ugx.588).

More beans were traded at Busia. An estimated 1000-1800MT of assorted beans varieties were bought. Yellow beans were preferred at Ksh.59/kg (2,572) while Nambale beans (K132) at Ksh.48/kg (Ugx.1,660). Mixed and Red beans were bought at Ksh.52/kg (Ugx.1,799) and Ksh.54/kg (Ugx.1,868) respectively.

Other commodities demanded were millet at Ksh.52/kg (Ugx.1,799), Sorghum at Ksh.25/kg (Ugx.865) and groundnuts at Ksh.103/kg (Ugx.3,563).

In Soroti, harvesting of rice and sweet potatoes were going on however the commodity prices did not decline and less was expected due to effects of the dry spell. Rice was offered at Ugx.3,600/kg while Sweet potatoes at Ugx.100,000 per sack.


Irish potatoes harvest also started in Kabale. A sack weighing 130kgs was offered at Ugx,100,000. Single colour beans and sweet potatoes were also harvesting and similarly sweet potatoes were highly affected by the dry spell. In Mbarara, matooke farmers are slowly recouping from disease and dry season effects. Price was tending low at farmgate. Medium size bunch was offered at Ugx.13,000 while a large one at Ugx.18,000. Small bunches weighing 15-17 kgs were sold at Ugx.7000-9000.


Farmers previously contracted by NAADS OWC to grow fruit trees are languishing with their stocks in the nurseries. A group met from Dduundu-Mukono noted that their NAADS contacts had not bought their stocks because there was no money. They were in town to verify how much some Teso areas MPs were offering to buy oranges. However they castigated that the Ugx.100-300 per planting was too low.

In Kampala a sack of oranges declined from Ugx.70,000 to Ugx.60,000 due to less demand. Price was expected to increase in December during the Christmas festive season. Less passion fruit was delivered to market. The much demanded purple variety from Masaka was bought at Ugx.880,000 to 950,000/sack depending on supply. The Kasese variety had no demand and at the same time very scarce at Ugx.400,000 per sack. Egg plant and green pepper were in plenty and going at Ugx.40,000-50,000/bag.


Meanwhile in Kamwenge, Rwandese traders bought less maize grain after reducing their purchase price from Ugx.600/kg to Ugx.570/kg.

Farmgain

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