Mzuzu: Lunyangwa Research Station has warned farmers in the country to take caution as they want to purchase various seeds for the 2018-19 growing season to avoid buying fake seeds.
The Research Station has noted that some unscrupulous seed dealers are taking advantage of unsuspecting farmers to sell them bogus seeds.
The warning comes shortly after the research station impounded some fake seeds from a seed dealer (name withheld) which supplied seeds to Plan Malawi International in Mzuzu last week.
Seed Certification Officer for the Station, Healy Potani said the impounding of fake seeds in Mzuzu reveal a serious risk that farmers are exposed to when buying seeds from suppliers.
For example what happened last week at Plan Malawi is that they purchased some seeds to be given to a certain organization.
Some officials at the organization however raised suspicion on viability and originality of the seeds so they brought them to the research station where upon examination, we established that the seeds were fake, he said.
The Certification Officer said such occurrences may continue if farmers are not cautious when buying seeds on the market.
Research Stations Manager, Tony Maulana said some unscrupulous seed dealers are taking advantage of farmers’ desperation to buy seeds, hence the need for farmers to see to it that they buy seeds from certified and reliable suppliers only.
Farmers need to buy seeds from those dealers whom are known to sell genuine seeds and avoid buying them from unreliable suppliers who dupe farmers by selling fake seeds at a cheaper price.
Currently we have a lot of seed dealers who are offering their seeds on the market to farmers. We want to take this advantage to warn these farmers to take extra caution since some of these dealers are selling seeds that are not worth to be used as seeds.
Some of these seeds being offered on the market to farmers are either rotten or cannot even germinate if planted, Maulana pointed out.
Source: Malawi News Agency MANA