By Tendai Munengwa
With more farmers in the country taking up the production of ginger, education institutions have also joined the fray in the wake of huge demand on the local and export markets.
Popularly known as Tsangamidzi in Shona, ginger has become the darling for millions across the globe because of its health benefits.
Given this huge global demand, a Harare-based school is now one of the leading producers of the crop with a yield of over 50 tonnes expected on the half a hectare piece of land.
The Head of Mother Touch Junior School, Mrs Rita Hwata said, “We started growing last year when we heard about the project last year. We are now harvesting and result are here for everyone to see. We are expecting good value from this ginger production, also our children are learning and will impart the knowledge home so that parents can do it on their backyard.”
Agriculture teacher Linus Randisa said, “The advantage with growing ginger is that it requires organic manure, which is readily available and as you can see from this small piece of land the results are amazing.”
Traditional Grains Association (TGA) chairperson, Mr Basil Nyabadza is equally excited about the latest development emphasising the health and monetary benefits of growing the crop on a large scale.
“Imagine if all schools adopt this they can generate a lot of money for their development. For example, here if you grow 150 tonnes of maize the value of that maize will be equal to the value of ginger per tonne. So, farmers by virtue that it requires organic method they can diversify and reap super-profits from ginger.”
With, Zimbabwe being home to some of the best organic products, agriculture experts believe there is potential for local farmers to tap into the billion-dollar global market for ginger.