ZIMBABWE- The weekly Zimbabwe Mercantile Exchange (ZMX) agricultural commodities auction recovered from a lucklustre Day 3 to record a 767 percent increase on Day 4, according to the Zimbabwean The Herald.

According to statistics from ZMX, the 147.32 tonnes of maize that successfully exchanged hands was worth US$42,722. 80  against last week’s 17 tonnes valued at US$4,845.

According to the data from ZMX, 147 tons of maize were traded at an average price of US$290 per tonne, representing a 782% increase in value.

The auction results show that buyers submitted maize bids for 800 tonnes at an average price of US$273.75 per tonne worth US$219,000.

Sellers were willing to sell 747.32 tonnes of maize at an average price of US$306.06 per tonne valued at US$228,724.76.

At the end of the auction, 147.32 tonnes were sold at an average price of US$290 per tonne to generate US$42,722.80 in earnings.

According to ZMX, The average price for maize has been on an upward trend in the past two weeks, trading at US$285 per tonne, before settling at US$290 per ton at this week’s auction.

At the auction, a total of 1,252 bids and offers with an average price of US$289.20 were unsuccessful.

Sellers also sold 20 percent of the maize they brought on the market, unlike the previous week when they only sold one percent.

The ZMX said the bid and offer prices were gradually converging, with average bid prices increasing from US$230 per tonne on day 2 to US$274 on day 4, while the average offer price decreased from US$330 per tonne to US$306 over the same time period.

An anonymous analyst said the success of the ZMX trade could be guaranteed only if GMB’s maize purchases from farmers were taken into reserve stock and not offered for sale.

Trading of maize on the ZMX platform can be enhanced only if major consumers of grain are encouraged to source their maize requirements on this trading platform, rather than to purchase from GMB-held stocks,” said the analyst.

According to The Herald, GMB is currently selling maize to buyers at US$200 plus US$168 at the interbank every Tuesday.

Recently, stockfeed manufacturers association of Zimbabwe (SMAZ) executive administrator Dr. Reneth Mano said it was unfortunate that there were some speculators and opportunists who were offering their maize for sale at high prices of US$$335 per tonne, a price which was only expected to prevail at the tail end of grain marketing season next year.

He said it was very important for domestic farmers and contractors to understand the seasonal pattern of domestic grain market price movements from harvest time to the end of the commercial grain marketing season.

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