THE Ministry of Lands, Agriculture, Fisheries, Water and Rural Resettlement is satisfied with the adherence by tobacco auction floors, to Covid-19 control regulations as preparations for the opening of the 2021 marketing season gather momentum.
The tobacco marketing season opens on April 7 while contract floors are expected to open on April 8.
In an interview after touring the Zimbabwe Leaf Tobacco, Tobacco Sales Floor and TianZe floors, Lands, Agriculture, Fisheries, Water and Rural Resettlement, Deputy Minister Vangelis Haritatos said he was impressed by the level of preparedness by auction floor operators.
“We are happy with what we have seen. The three tobacco floors are on top of the game. This year they have increased efficiencies.
“The most important part of the preparations is the Covid-19 (control). We know tobacco floors are already organised but we are looking at the reg- ulations they have put in place. We want to save the lives of our growers and staff who are important to us.”
Deputy Minister Haritatos said the country was also expecting higher prices and expressed confidence that the pay- ment system would be efficient with farmers receiving heir money early.
TSF general Manager, Mr Kennedy Zimunya said no farmer would be allowed to sit at the floors.
“All systems concerning Covid-19 are in place. We expect a farmer to come sell and go so we do not offer accommodation,” he said.
TianZe general manager, Mr Yei Hai said they were encouraging their staff to be vaccinated to curb the spread of the pandemic.
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