WM 1 Maize

The National Maize Corporation trades in grade 1, dry, white maize which is sourced from local farmers and also imported as and when necessary.

Split Beans

Lusendvo Split Beans are split red speckled sugar beans. These beans are exactly like the whole beans described above, but they have been split during handling (harvesting, transporting, storage, etc). These are not to be viewed as reject products, but are actually highly convenient and affordable as they cook in half the time and are energy savers, making them a very affordable option. Test.

Umndeni Beans

Umndeni Beans are red speckled sugar beans; grade 2. Grade two is the best grade in the pre-packing category. Grade 1 beans are exclusively set aside for canning purposes. NMC trades in red speckled sugar beans of local origin and of medium to large size. These are sourced locally and imported as and when necessary.

Sihlobo Rice

Sihlobo Rice is premium rice imported from Thailand and packaged at the National Maize Corporation. This is a high quality, long grain, parboiled rice that is carefully sourced and is taken through quality assurance checks before packaging and reselling. NMC prides herself on the quality of her grain.

Groundnuts

Lusendvo Split Beans are split red speckled sugar beans. These beans are exactly like the whole beans described above, but they

FAQ

One of the most critical physiological factors in successful grain storage is the moisture content of the crop. High moisture content leads to storage problems because it encourages fungal and attracts insect ; respiration and germination. However, moisture content in the growing crop is naturally high and only starts to decrease as the crop reaches maturity and the grains are drying and getting ready to be harvested. In their natural state, the seeds would have a period of dormancy and then germinate either when re-wetted by rain or as a result of naturally adequate moisture content. Another major factor influencing grain spoilage is temperature. Grains are biologically active and respire during storage. One of the products of respiration is heat, and reducing the temperature of the crop can help to diminish the rate of respiration, thereby lengthening the storage life by lessening the possibility of germination. Another major temperature effect is on the activity of insects and fungal problems. With lower temperatures, the metabolic rate of insects and fungi decreases and consequently so does the activity causing grain spoilage. A damp or warm spot in grain will increase the rate of respiration. In addition to heat, another product of respiration is moisture. The heat and moisture from such a ‘hot spot’ can spread by convection, encouraging moulds and bacteria, which in turn respire and give off more heat and moisture. It’s therefore becomes a self-generating process. Insects activity also increases with a rise in temperature. If grain moisture content is too high, even the best aeration equipment and monitoring management will not keep the grain from spoiling, it only delays the inevitable.
Currently, most of the maize grown in Swaziland is harvested by hand. Considering the need for a farmer to keep the cobs clean, to dry the cob immediately and avoid infestation of the harvested cobs, a farmer makes the following preparations:
  • Make sure the drying place or equipment is clean and disinfected, ready to receive the cobs.
  • Remove old grain and dirt from anything that will come in contact with the good or new grain. This includes harvesting tools, carts, wheel barrows, bags and baskets, etc.
  • Where possible, fumigate them to kill insects or their eggs. This is done in order to avoid infection of new grain by insects and their eggs.
  • Organize enough labour to reap and carry the cobs to the drying place timeously
The National Maize Corporation also offers the services of a combine harvester. However, it is currently best suited to large sized fields.
After harvesting, the greatest enemy of grain is moisture. Wet grains attract insects and mould. Therefore, the grain must be dried as soon as possible after harvesting. Drying is the systematic reduction of crop moisture down to safe levels for storage, usually 12%-14% moisture content. It is one of the key post harvest operations since all down-stream operations depend on it. This is particularly so in some regions of Uganda where humidity and rainfall remain high during the harvesting season resulting in delayed harvest which also constrain the actual drying of the grain. Drying permits the escape of moisture from grain moisture to an acceptable level, which can sustain very low metabolism. The enzyme activities and grain tissue respiration is reduced to a very low level, thus inhibiting sprouting/germination. During drying, the dry air rapidly takes moisture away from the grain, especially if the air is moving and has got low humidity. Grain can be dried in a crib before shelling and on tarpaulins after it has been shelled.
A good storage structure should:
  • Provide protection from common storage loss agents such as insect pests, rodents, moulds, birds, etc.
  • Maintain an even, cool and dry storage environment. The maize should be placed on pellets above the floor to avoid cold conditions that may lead to moulds
  • Should not allow re-wetting of grain by either moisture migration or rain.
  • Offer reasonable protection from thieves.
  • Be simple and inexpensive to construct using, where possible, locally available materials and skills.
  • Be easy to clean and repair.
  • Grain should be protected from rodents

The National Maize Corporation also offers storage facilities to large scale farmers and/or farmer groups at a very reasonable rate.

We hope we have been able to adequately respond to burning questions one might have with regards to the harvest period. We wish you a happy and safe week ahead as well as a productive harvesting season.