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Friday, May 24, 2024

Agriculture stakeholders pledge to support productivity

Agriculture stakeholders pledge to support productivity

Story by Bruce Chahwanda

PLAYERS in the agriculture value chain have expressed commitment towards supporting the growth of the sector in line with the government targets under the Agriculture Recovery Plan.

The country’s agricultural sector has been growing for the past three years, with the government accelerating the mechanisation programme.

President Emmerson Mnangagwa toured various exhibition stands to show the government’s commitment towards enhancing productivity in the sector.

The tour covered strategic companies in the agricultural sector, such as the Agricultural and Rural Development Authority (ARDA) which has been instrumental in the turnaround of the sector.

President Mnangagwa also toured the Grain Marketing Board which is critical for the storage of the harvested grain, and then moved to the Chinhoyi University of Technology stand where innovations took centre stage.

With financial institutions playing a critical role in the success of the agricultural season, President Mnangagwa passed through the CBZ Agro-Yield stand.

The President also got a deeper understanding of the golden leaf value chain at the tobacco hall, before moving on to mining stands housing Mimosa and ZIMPLATS among other firms.

Exhibitors pledged their commitment to a successful agricultural season through availing inputs on time while others feel expansion projects will create employment opportunities.

The managing director of CBZ Agro, Mr Walter Chigodora said, “We have started distribution of inputs and here we were showing the President the processes that farmers go through.”

“As Zimplats, we are implementing the US$1.8 billion project and works have already started in that regard,” said Ms Busi Chindove of ZIMPLATS.

ZFC managing director, Dr Richard Dafana added, ” We are determined to satisfy the market and we started distributing fertiliser a few months ago and we believe we will meet the demand this season.”

Other companies that are into manufacturing of agricultural inputs and livestock breeders got the attention of the President.

The Ministry of Lands,Agriculture, Water, Fisheries, and Rural Development stand had a model of wheat, horticultural produce and mechanisation among other exhibitions.

President Mnangagwa said the exhibitors are getting it right in both quantity and quality through the mechanisation of the sector.

“When we moved around, we covered most of the strategic aspects of our economy about agriculture. It is my sincere belief that year in and year out, we are getting more and more modernized, and this is what it should be. We want to mechanise our agriculture even though the level of our cattle breeding is excellent. Each year when this agriculture show is held, we can see the change from one year to the other. We have been told there are more exhibitors each year both in terms of quantity and quality things are getting better and better,” said the President.

The government and the private sector are in agreement on the need to continuously mechanise the sector to boost yields.

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