Zimbabwe is spending $800 Million per year on grain imports. the Daily News reports. This was revealed by deputy Agriculture minister Vangelis Haritatos who was speaking in senate when he said the huge import bill was due to low productivity. Haritatos said:
Because of the low productivity and low production, the country has become a perennial net importer of cereal grains amounting to US$800 million annually. This increases pressure on the fiscus to source foreign currency for grain importation, which could be channelled to other productive sectors of the economy, if we produced sufficient amounts for our country. The Pfumvudza concept is an attempt to reverse this insalubrious state of affairs.
The low productivity has been caused by a number of factors, among them poor agronomic practices, poor soils, the impact of climate change and failure to approach agriculture from a business perspective by both farmers and our extension system.
Climate change impacts are characterised by poor rainfall seasons, prolonged mid-season dry spells, very high temperatures during the growing season and the early cessation of the rains. Thus, the adoption of the Pfumvudza concept, which is based on conservation agriculture principles, will help climate-proof agricultural production, and in particular the food production sub-sector
This comes after the government unveiled an agriculture recovery plan it said will help the sector become an 8 billion dollar industry by the year 2025.
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