The Pfumvudza farming concept will benefit everyone as the Government seeks to empower the majority of people, President Mnangagwa said yesterday at State House when he was handed the ZimLife appreciation award for successfully spearheading the Command Agriculture Programme.
ZimLife gave the President a sculpture of a lion, which was handed over by its director, Mr Israel Kembo.
This year, the Government introduced the Pfumvudza concept, a conservation farming method aimed at improving production for 1,8 million households of small-scale farmers.
Said President Mnangagwa: “The Pfumvudza concept is more embracing because with Command Agriculture, we were dealing with people who had some degree of empowerment already, but with Pfumvudza, no one would be left behind. Those who have tractors and so on can go to the Command Agriculture under CBZ.
“Those who don’t have tractors, who don’t have cattle and so on, but have hands can go to Pfumvudza and we will give them seed so no one will be left behind and say ‘I was not empowered’. Everyone will be empowered.”
President Mnangagwa said Command Agriculture was successful because farmers listened to expert advice.
“There was an occasion when we had a bumper harvest and I remember when I went to the late former President Mugabe and said Mr President, we have a problem of storage. Which is a good problem: hunger or the problem of storage?”
Lands, Agriculture, Water and Rural Resettlement Deputy Minister Vangelis Haritatos said the Government was committed to agriculture development as seen by the recent launch of the Agriculture and Food Systems Strategy and the Livestock Growth Plan.
Pfumvudza falls under the Agriculture Recovery Plan and transformation strategy.
“Basically, Pfumvudza is exactly what the President said, that no one will be left behind. It will target 1,8 million households with a target of 1,8 million tonnes of cereal and 360 000 tonnes of oil seed,” he said.
Farmers are expected to plant three different crops that include cereals, oil seed and cash crops.
So far, over three million people have been trained under the Pfumvudza programme.