Source: New wheat producer price announced | The Herald December 12, 2018
Tendai Mugabe Senior Reporter
Government has set the wheat producer price for the 2018-19 agricultural marketing season at US$630 per tonne, up from US$500, Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Minister Monica Mutsvangwa has said. Minister Mutsvangwa made the announcement yesterday while addressing journalists on decisions taken by Cabinet at its sitting earlier in the day. She said the new selling price sought to boost wheat production.
“Following a presentation by Finance and Economic Development Minister (Professor Mthuli Ncube) as chairman of the Cabinet Committee on Industrial and Economic Development, Cabinet approved a wheat producer selling price of US$630 per metric tonne for 2018-2019 agricultural marketing season,” said Minister Mutsvangwa.
“The approved wheat producer price takes into consideration the need to boost production, thereby improving food security. Cabinet further agreed on measures to boost local wheat production as follows:
- that grain millers and bakers be facilitated to venture into wheat production for their specific needs.
- that appropriate schemes be instituted to encourage farmers to venture into wheat production and that a programme be undertaken to systematically address the high cost of locally-produced fertilisers and other inputs to render local products more competitive.”
Prof Ncube said Government felt that the new wheat producer price was the right incentive for farmers to go back on the land.
On whether it was possible to grow wheat suitable for bread-making under Zimbabwean climatic and weather conditions, Prof Ncube said: “We should encourage local producers to produce the wheat that has to be imported. We are told that there are certain regions in Zimbabwe where climate is possible to grow that kind of hard wheat.”
He said he had also briefed Cabinet on his recent trip to Kenya and the United States where he engaged in high level meetings on Sustainable Development Goals and re-engagement with the US establishment.
The minister said during the visit, he also discussed Zimbabwe’s debt issue.
Prof Ncube said Zimbabwe’s debt situation was unique as the country was facing a bigger internal debt compared to the external one.
He said other African countries were facing the challenge of a ballooning external debt.