Business

Cooking oil prices shoot up globally

Edible oils producers may require more forex to maintain current production levels and meet demand after prices of the key raw material, crude cooking oil, shot up more than 100 percent on the global market.

The sharp increase in prices on the global market explains the astronomical increase in the prices of cooking oil on the domestic market for much of the year, industry players said.

The situation is likely to result in a supply deficit if producers do not receive increased allocations on the formal market. 

Resorting to getting forex at higher rates on open market could further push the final price of the product, a basic commodity for every household, to the consumer.

Zimbabwe faces acute shortage of soya beans and recently criminalised its side marketing by farmers and middlemen. 

As a controlled commodity, soya beans can now only be sold to the Grain Marketing Board or a licensed contractor.

Such is the gravity of the situation that soya beans exports from Zimbabwe have also been banned. Offenders of the new trade regulations face a fine three times the value side marketed and possible jail term of up to two years if they are convicted.

Under the new laws farmers should not store or transport above 100 kilogrammes without permission from the GMB.

The fact that Zimbabwe produced only 51 000 metric tonnes over the last five years against demand of 241 000 tonnes, illustrates the magnitude of the current deficit of the crop.

-herald

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