The Farmers Union of Malawi (FUM) has said soaring prices of food globally is an opportunity for Malawi to invest heavily in the agriculture sector.
FUM president Felix Jumbe was reacting to a BBC report which indicated that global food prices have leapt due to a US heat wave and drought in some part of Eastern Europe.
The price of maize, wheat and soybean saw the most dramatic increases which the World Bank last week described as â€œhistoricâ€.
The bank warned that countries importing grain will be vulnerable.
From June to July this year, according to BBC, maize and wheat prices each rose by 25 percent while soybean prices increased by 17 percent.
Jumbe said Malawi should use the opportunity to undertake massive production of different crops on a commercial scale to sell on the global market.
â€œIf we produce 400 000 metric tonnes of soybean, 1 000 000 of maize, groundnuts 300 000, cotton 400 000, beans 500 000 and rice 100 000 metric tonnes, foreign exchange shortage will be history.
â€œIn fact, we will be able to get more foreign exchange than we currently do with tobacco, tea and sugar combined,â€ he said.
But he said that requires huge capital investment into the agriculture sector which most commercial banks are unwilling to undertake as they perceive farming as a risky business.
Jumbe said commercial banks are unwilling to invest in the sector because they are at home transacting in treasury bills which have zero risk.