Resettled farmers produce 70% wheat


HARARE-Beneficiaries of the agrarian reform program which started in 2000 are contributing 70% of the country’s wheat while communal farmer farmers cater for 6.95% of the cereal which is used mainly for bread making.

This year the country has put a record of 86 466 hectares under wheat production compared to 80 882 hectares last year, with 14.5% area planted above the initial target of 85 000 hectares, and 96% of the revised target of 90 000 hectares.

This was revealed by Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Minister, Monica Mutsvangwa in a post cabinet report yesterday.

She added that this year winter wheat is in good condition.

“The bulk of the planted wheat or 69.8% is by resettled farmers (A1 and A2), while the communal farmers contributed 6.95%”, with  “the bulk of the planted wheat is now at vegetative stage and is in good condition,” said Minister Mutsvangwa.

Mutsvangwa added that the government is planning to export surplus wheat to other SADC countries as the country is anticipating excess harvest against the required 360 000 tonnes per year.

She said the country’s current wheat stocks will last for 8 months.

“Regarding wheat, the country’s current stocks stand at 140 029 metric tonnes, which are sufficient to provide 8 months cover.

“Considering that the country is wheat self-sufficient, discussions are underway with neighbouring countries on possible wheat exports,” she said.   

She said the quelea birds control activities are underway, including the aerial spraying of nesting points using drones, adding that the required pesticides are also readily available.

On maize stocks, the Minister said the Grain Marketing Board had a total of 204 084 metric tonnes of maize in stock that will last for 5 to 6 months, with 10 000 MT expected to be sold to Rwanda as the country has sufficient grain to carry it through to the next season.

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