Midlands surpasses winter wheat target

By Tafara Chikumira

THE Midlands Province has surpassed its target of wheat by over 1 000 hectares after government extended the planting period to increase production of the strategic crop.

Having set a target of 6 450 hectares this season, the province has since gone above 7 600 hectares.

“We have some other private sector in the matrix. CBZ has since surpassed its target. AFC and the Presidential Support Scheme have also surpassed their targets. It’s a promising season and we hope to make significant contributions towards the national demand. We are very grateful that inputs arrived on time. We had a target of 6 450 hectares but we are now at 7 625 hectares,” said ARDA Provincial Director, Mrs Madeline Magwenzi Provincial Director ARDA.

Government has also called on farmers to take advantage of training programmes being facilitated by the Agricultural and Rural Development AuthorityARDA although there are concerns over the vandalism of electricity infrastructure in irrigation schemes.

“We are experiencing some serious problems at irrigation schemes. Some people are vandalising electricity at irrigation schemes which is having a toll on farmers. We understand that some irrigation schemes are also experiencing moisture stress. We are going to the ground to see to it that we help farmers who are facing problems so that we win the fight. We are also training farmers on seed management,” she said.

The winter wheat planting period, which was supposed to end on the 30th of last month, was extended following a huge demand on the global market due to Russia’s special military operation in Ukraine.