Agriculture sector gets a major boost

 By Tichaona Kurewa

The Zimbabwe Journal of Agriculture Research which publishes various agriculture related research findings from within and outside the country has been relaunched.

The relaunch of the Zimbabwe Journal of Agriculture Research is expected to expedite sharing of agriculture related research findings.

 Speaking to ZBC News, Board Chairperson Agricultural Research Council Dr Unesu Ushewekunze-Obatolu said the journal will be a resource for the entire agriculture value chain from input suppliers, farmers, processors, transporters, marketers and consumers, among others.

 “Its absence means that our scientists were being focused elsewhere, they will take their articles out of the country but because of internet the journals will still be accessible but it’s still better to publish in our own journal that we can regulate the quality. This will be a regular journal, in the past it was a bi-annual journal with two issues in a year and we hope to go back to that or even do better because  we have other means now, we can publish continuously  on the internet. So as we try to improve production and competitiveness we actually influence the players, the value chain players who must use the knowledge and the technologies by having them access the knowledge sources through publications,” she said.

Agricultural Research Council (ARC) Chief Executive Officer Dr Xavier Mhike highlighted the journal will also be published electronically to ensure no one left behind.

“This journal will be of great importance because it is linking up the different levels of value research to the linkages of extension and information exchange. We are also developing a website to have this journal online so it will come in real-time for all research and relevant information being brought to the people in real-time so that answers to some of the problems we are having in the agricultural production sphere will be answered immediately,” said Mhike.

International Crop Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics Senior Scientist Dr Martin Moyo noted the journal will be key in sharing emerging technologies.

“The re-launch of the journal is very good for Zimbabwean re-searchers as they able to publicise and share their research findings; they are able to share technologies that work within the different spheres be it live stock, fisheries and cropping. This is important to share experience to share research findings which can help farmers, practitioners and users further utilise that kind of research work to further improve production and productivity within the sectors that I have mentioned,” he noted.

The re-launch of the journal which was last published 24 years ago comes at an opportune time when Zimbabwe is targeting to achieve an US$8.2 billion agricultural economy by 2025.