Farmers urged to form synergies to boost production

By Regis Mhako

Government has advised farmers to form synergies to boost production and achieve national food security.

Mhangura farmer, Misheck Paradzanwa of Chapman Farm has successfully utilised his 30 hectare piece of land, where he expects an average yield of eight tonnes of maize per hectare.

He was therefore a natural choice for hosting a field day where it emerged that government’s input support programmes are achieving the desired results.

“I have thirty hectares from which I expect an average yield of eight tonnes per hectare. We are happy with support from government through inputs which have enabled us to remain on the land. However, I am not doing irrigation-fed agriculture because the power utility, ZESA, disconnected a transformer that provided power to cover 150 hectares. It’s been almost 20 years now without a transformer,” he said.

The occasion saw Mashonaland West Minister of State for Provincial Affairs and Devolution, Honourable Mary Mliswa calling on farmers to pool resources together and boost production to ensure national food self sufficiency.

“Organise yourselves as farmers and share whatever you have especially farming equipment and be able to pay back government for inputs you will have been given. You must also take advantage of the mechanisation programme to enhance productivity,” said Hon Mliswa.

Meanwhile, Makonde Ward 2 Councillor, Lucky Machawire condemned the practice where some farmers are planting gum trees on prime land suitable for crop production.

“Hon Minister, we have witnessed a trend where some tracts of land are being used as gum tree plantations, yet we have demand for agricultural land.”

The agrarian reform programme has transformed lives of thousands of people who relied on handouts for survival.