Zimbabwe has raked in US$64.4 million from the sale of 28.2 million kilograms of tobacco in 16 days compared with US$18.6m from the sale of 10.5 million kilograms in the same period last year.
The Herald, citing statistics released by the Tobacco Industry and Marketing Board (TIMB), said the bulk of the tobacco delivered came from the contract farmers.
Buyers offered the highest price of US$6.60/kg at the contract floors, while the highest price at the auction floors remained at US$4.99/kg.
Tobacco (10.5kg) that was sold in the same period last year constitute about 37% of the deliveries so far this year as 382 149 bales have since been laid and 369,862 sold as compared with 162,298 laid with 150,562 bales sold during the corresponding period last year.
Most farmers are now producing tobacco under contract farming. Under this arrangement, farmers are guaranteed a timely supply of inputs and, in some cases, funds to pay workers.
Last year’s tobacco sales season was delayed due to a standoff between the government and farmers over the pricing of the golden leaf.
Farmers were demanding to be paid in foreign currency saying their commodity was being sold in foreign currency adding that they need foreign currency for inputs.