By Mike Mataka:
Mpatsa Holdings Limited has introduced a new pesticide on the market called Ecoterex, touted to be more effective in dealing with fall armyworms in maize fields.
This came out during a farmer awareness and training workshop on the product held in Lunzu, Blantyre recently.
It follows a partnership the company has entered with producers of the pesticide, Zimbabwean based Shumba Group, to be distributors of the product in the country.
Chairman of Mpatsa Holdings Limited, Jimmy Koreia Mpatsa, said the initiative was taken after appreciating the grave impact of fall armyworms on maize production since the first attack in 2017.
“As you might be aware that Mpatsa Holdings is known for the distribution of Shumba Super, which is a post-harvest treatment, we realised that yields have started to nose-dive and, as a Malawian company, we thought of finding a cost-effective way of controlling fall armyworms hence the partnership,”. Mpatsa said.
District Agriculture Development Officer for Blantyre, Linda Mphande, said the pesticide has come at a right time when the country is facing serious food security threats from fall armyworms.
“The product has come at a right time when farmers in the country are struggling to produce enough maize due to the effects of fall armyworms and most of the farmers are failing to control it because most of the products on the market are either expensive or ineffective,” Mphande said.
Currently, it is reported that armyworms have already destroyed some maize fields in some districts including Nkhotakota.
In the 2019/2020 budget, parliament approved K500 million to be used to purchase pesticides to fight armyworms and other pests.
Fall armyworm is a pest that feeds in large numbers on the leaves, stems and reproductive parts of a wide variety of plants including maize.
A vibrant writer who gives a great insight on hot topics and issues
Today’s top business story: Top Commercial Banks In Malawi