Elita Chikwati Senior Agriculture Reporter
Cottco has received 56 681 tonnes of cotton from farmers at a time prices are expected to firm on the international markets.
The crop delivered so far constitutes 38 percent of the targeted intake of 150 000 tonnes.
Last year, farmers delivered 82 479 tonnes to Cottco.
According to the Cottco quarterly trading update for the first quarter ending June 30, ginning of the cotton has started.
“The company’s order book is full for both lint and ginned seed and the company is forecasting to export 76 percent of its lint,” said Cottco.
“Side-marketing continues to be a challenge, although the company has in recent years maintained a market share of over 90 percent. The promulgation of Statutory Instrument 96 of 2021 is also expected to further curb side-marketing.”
Meanwhile, farmers have applauded Government for releasing US$652 000 and $222 million towards settling their outstanding payments from last season.
The cotton growers said this season they are not experiencing challenges with the payments, but appealed to Government to ensure they get their money once rather than getting a subsidy later.
Government encouraged the cotton farmers to provide their bank details to Cottco for easy payments.
Cotton Marketers and Ginners Association chairman, Mr Stewart Mubonderi said they were happy that farmers were getting their money.
“We are grateful to Government for releasing money towards the outstanding payments,” he said.
“Farmers are getting part of the money from Cottco and will later get the Government subsidy. The situation could have been better if we received the money at once.”
Last season, farmers received the bulk of their money in groceries and household goods, but this season the growers can make a choice either to receive their money as cash or goods.