Boost for Chi­man­i­mani pineap­ple farm­ers

The Manica Post - - Local News/ Crime Watch - Wim­bainashe Zhakata Post Cor­re­spon­dent

DUR­ING the first quar­ter of this year, Eco­cert, which is one of the world’s most re­spected in­ter­na­tional cer­ti­fi­ca­tions of or­ganic prod­ucts, will be in Chi­man­i­mani to cer­tify pineap­ple farm­ers in Ndi­adzo com­mu­nity.

Eco­cert is an in­de­pen­dent French body for or­ganic in­spec­tion and cer­ti­fi­ca­tion which per­forms qual­ity con­trol by en­sur­ing that all prod­uct spec­i­fi­ca­tions are strictly ad­hered to.

Re­cently, Zim­babwe’s Trade pro­mo­tion body, Zim­trade, in con­junc­tion with a Nether­lands com­pany had en­gaged in a pi­lot project to as­sist Chi­man­i­mani farm­ers to grow or­ganic pineap­ples for ex­port mar­kets.

In an ex­clu­sive in­ter­view with The Man­ica Post Zim­trade chief ex­ec­u­tive Mr Al­lan Ma­juru con­firmed the re­sponse by Chi­man­i­mani famers since last year.

He said “The project is still in progress. Through the year Zim­trade as­sisted in get­ting pineap­ple farm­ers ready for cer­ti­fi­ca­tion through mon­i­tor­ing and eval­u­at­ing their farm­ing sys­tems in ac­cor­dance with spe­cific or­ganic cer­ti­fi­ca­tion re­quire­ments,” he said.

Mr Ma­juru said soon the cer­ti­fy­ing team will be in Chi­man­i­mani to cer­tify the pineap­ple farm­ers.

“In the first quar­ter of 2019 a team from Eco­cert, the cer­ti­fy­ing body will be in Chi­man­i­mani to un­der­take the cer­ti­fy­ing process.

“We are quite con­fi­dent with the progress and are look­ing for­ward to com­mence ex­port­ing this year,” he said.

Mr Ma­juru said Zim­trade as­sists both in­ter­na­tional and lo­cal or­ganic farm­ers.

“We also fa­cil­i­tated var­i­ous in­ter­ven­tion pro­grammes by both in­ter­na­tional and lo­cal or­ganic farm ex­perts. How­ever, the Ndiyadzo pineapp­ple farm­ers were very re­cep­tive and we man­aged to reach the ma­jor mile­stones set out in this project,” he said.

Ndi­adzo com­mu­nity are farm­ers that are be­ing de­vel­oped for ex­ports through en­sur­ing that they get the Eco­cert cer­ti­fi­ca­tion.

Upon at­tain­ing the cer­ti­fi­ca­tion, they would be el­i­gi­ble to ex­port to the EU.

Zim­trade is a na­tional trade body that de­vel­ops and pro­motes com­pa­nies, pro­duc­ers among oth­ers to be ready for ex­port.

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