Less demand for maize as new harvest commences.

December 20, 2018

There are indications of newly harvested maize grain on the market. The newly harvested maize was offered at Ugx.400/kg in Kiboga, Kyankwanzi, Iganga and Soroti. Other maize production areas also offered it at the same price. Usually at this time of the year (December), maize price is low depending on when the final harvest season starts. This time round the season has come late and was highly affected by the rain distribution. Some locations have just received rain for example Rakai district. It drizzled in August and September and left the area very dry. Other locations received scattered rains throughout between August to December.

Harvesting maize and other crops was also mentioned in Bunyoli and Tororo area. In Kasese maize cost Ugx.500/kg and was presumed newly harvested maize.

Meanwhile in the major markets, old stock maize was offered at Ugx.650-660/kg in Kampala for a few weeks. The maize grain market has been slow especially during the first weeks of December. At Busia business was very slow since the Kenyan traders who turned up did not demand for maize. They instead demanded for a lot of beans and on a daily basis, they purchased approximately 1000-1300 MT of assorted beans varieties.

The maize flour prices increased in most locations or markets including Kampala. Supply of grain reduced and most of the grain delivered to market was from rural stores in centres managed by transit traders.

When compared to previous years, this December maize price currently (Ugx.650/kg) is very similar to last year’s price of Ugx.700/kg. However, since the season opened in December, it is much likely to drop further in the final weeks of the month. The maize price during 2016 rose extra ordinary to Ugx.1200/kg compared to Ugx.930/kg and Ugx.400/kg during 2015 and 2014 respectively.

Given the expected low maize yield this season, the market price might quickly increase between January and March before the seasonal planting.

Surprisingly the market is receiving plenty of matooke from Mbarara. Some supply is also expected from Mbale and Kapchorwa area. This supply is delivered to major markets in the central region to catch a better price during Christmas season.

In Mbarara, bunches were offered at farm gate of Ugx.8,000 to Ugx.13,000 depending on size of bunch. The best matooke was purchased from Ngarama Hills in Isingiro district at Ugx.13,000 for huge bunches that should have cost Ugx.20,000 at farm gate.

Owino and other markets in Kampala received good supply of matooke and the average market price was low at Ugx.13,000-25,000 per bunch. The market price might increase slightly because of demand as the Christmas season draws near.

Other fresh commodities in high supply included Irish potatoes from Kapchorwa, Mbale, Kisoro, Kabale and Mwizi-Mbarara. The price for Kabale preferred potato declined to Ugx.100,000 per 130kg sack in Kabale. Irish potatoes from Wanale-Mbale and Kapchorwa were offered at Ugx.600/kg farm gate price. Mwezi Irish potatoes sold at Ugx.60,000-75,000 per sack weighing 130-140kgs farm gate level. The current harvesting season in the above locations has registered Irish potatoes at a lower price Ugx.1000-1500/kg retail price in most markets countrywide.

Farmgain Africa

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