Tobacco rakes in $160.2 million

Leaf market nears end, rakes in $167 million

Post was last updated: July 21, 2021

Chidanti-Malunga

The 2021 tobacco selling season is nearing its end, with Limbe Auction Floors expected to close on Friday, officials have said.

Within the first 13 weeks of sales, overall, the green gold has raked in $167.7 million.

Figures from AHL Group show that the amount has been realised from sales of 102 kilogrammes (kg) of all types of tobacco.

Both volume and revenue is higher than at the same time last when the country earned $129.7 million from 85.4 million kg.

In an interview, Tobacco Commission Chief Executive Officer Joseph Chidanti Malunga said there was reduced inflow of tobacco at the Limbe Floors.

He rated the market as impressive this far despite being lowly rated by other stakeholders and commentators.

“Unexpectedly, we have seen that prices have been good, quality has been good and we have not complained. It is a surprise to us but, in terms of ranking, it remains the lowest after other markets,” he said.

Tobacco Association of Malawi Trust President Abiel Kalima Banda said the leaf has been exhausted in farms and, by early next month, farmers would have depleted stock.

He urged buyers to offer good prices for the remaining tobacco to motivate farmers to remain in the industry, rated as dying in some circles.

“Since the demand is high than the supply, I would love it if the buyers would buy at a good price so that the farmers should be impressed and go back to the field in the next farming season,” he said.

Tobacco is Malawi’s top export earner.

Justin Mkweu is a fast growing reporter who currently works with Times Group on the business desk.

He is however flexible as he also writes about current affairs and national issues.

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