New Rules for tobacco contractors

BY Tendai Munengwa

The Tobacco Industry and Marketing Board (TIMB) has introduced new rules which will see all contractors being required to avail a full set of tobacco inputs while barring farmers from side marketing.

TIMB chairperson, Mr Patrick Devenish told ZBC News this Monday that tobacco auctioning under the 2020 marketing season has come to an end and there will be no mop up sales.

“Yes deliveries under auctioning are done, and so auctioning has closed and there will be mop-up sales, but contract sales will continue to clear about three million kgs anticipated to be still coming, then until it is over, the contract will remain open.”

Mr Devenish also revealed that TIMB has come up with new contract growing rules to ensure a win-win situation for farmers and contractors.

“All contractors are now required to ensure that they give farmers a full package of inputs, the recommended fertilizers, chemicals and other resources, this we have done to promote good quality and curb side marketing. Because farmers were being short-changed as they would be given inadequate inputs and expected to deliver good crop, so by these new rules they will also deal with the issue of side marketing.”

Meanwhile, the latest statistics from TIMB show that the country can achieve about 185 million kilogrammes of the golden leaf against a target of 230 million kilogrammes set for this marketing season, a decline attributed to drought.