Zim to import maize despite bumper harvest expectations

ZIMBABWE is likely to continue importing maize from Zambia and South Africa to meet its national needs despite the recent projections of a bumper harvest made by the Agriculture ministry, an agricultural expert has said.

Source: Zim to import maize despite bumper harvest expectations – NewsDay Zimbabwe February 13, 2017

BY BLESSED MHLANGA

Agricultural and Rural Development Authority board chairperson, Basil Nyabadza, told NewsDay last week that the country still requires more grain imports despite the expectations of a good season, which received a boost from good rains and government’s command agriculture scheme.

“We are happy that we were blessed with good rains this year and this means our dams will be full and most of our farmers are expecting a very good harvest, but there will be some grain imports, particularly maize to supplement our national needs, but it will not be much,” he said.

Nyabadza said, for small grains, the government was yet to carry out a full assessment on the impact of the heavy rains, which saw some areas flooding, while some fields were washed away as rivers burst their banks.

“We are yet to have a complete assessment of the impact of the rains, but as for maize, while other farmers were affected, the general outlook points to a bumper harvest. We will have to assess the small grains before saying anything on them,” he said.

Nyabadza said the government was already on the drawing board looking at the challenges faced by farmers during the 2016-2017 season, with the view to making improvements in the 2017-2018 season.

“Next season should be bigger and better. We are consolidating because the framework has already been set and the policy is there so it can only be improved,” he said.

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