CHIEF Chanje of the Chewa people in Chipata has assured independent tobacco farmers not to panic because a Lusaka based company has
offered to buy tobacco from them.
In an interview, chief Chanje said Novele Tobacco Company would buy tobacco from independent farmers at competitive prices.
“Most farmers have been supported by Japan Tobacco International, Pemba Leaf and Sunbridge so we want to cater for those who are standing on their own. During marketing time, outgrower companies always give priority to their farmers. Sometimes when there is a lot of tobacco, they just buy a limited number of kilogrammes,” chief Chanje said.
He said there was a possibility that most tobacco companies would come up with good prices this marketing season.
“I have seen the price list for Novele Tobacco Company, their prices seem to be good so let the independent tobacco farmers remain calm,” chief Chanje said.
He advised independent farmers to ensure that they sell their crop on cash basis.
“Independent buyers should not get tobacco on credit because it is difficult to trace them once they go,” said chief Chanje.
Most independent tobacco farmers face a lot of difficulties in finding markets because out grower companies always give priority to their sponsored farmers.