House­holds get farm­ing in­puts

The Sunday Mail (Zimbabwe) - - NEWS - Tan­yaradzwa Ku­taura

GOV­ERN­MENT has so far dis­trib­uted more than half of tar­geted in­puts un­der the US$65 mil­lion Pres­i­den­tial In­puts Sup­port Scheme that will ben­e­fit over 1,8 mil­lion house­holds in the 2018-19 sum­mer crop­ping sea­son.

This year’s pro­gramme was launched as early as June to al­low small­holder farm­ers enough time to pre­pare for the sea­son.

To date, 70 000 tonnes of fer­tilis­ers have been availed.

Lands, Agri­cul­ture, Wa­ter, Cli­mate and Ru­ral Re­set­tle­ment Deputy Min­is­ter Van­ge­lis Peter Har­i­tatos told The Sun­day Mail that Gov­ern­ment would meet its tar­get of 90 000 tonnes of com­pound D fer­tiliser and Am­mo­nium Ni­trate.

“Gov­ern­ment, through funds com­mit­ted to the Pres­i­den­tial In­puts Sup­port Scheme, has spent a to­tal amount of US$65 mil­lion. So far, farm­ers have re­ceived 12 465,74 met­ric tonnes of maize seed. Gov­ern­ment is tar­get­ing to pro­vide 16 000 met­ric tonnes of seed to farm­ers.

“On fer­tilis­ers, farm­ers have re­ceived 45 546,35 met­ric tonnes of com­pound D and 25 781,21 tonnes of top dress­ing,” he said.

Soya bean farm­ers, added the Deputy Min­is­ter, had ac­cessed 207,77 tonnes of seed while over 500 tonnes of small grains had been dis­bursed out of a tar­get of 2 500 tonnes.

Deputy Min­is­ter Har­i­tatos said Gov­ern­ment was in­vest­ing in cloud seed­ing to min­imise the an­tic­i­pated neg­a­tive im­pact of ef­fects of El Niño.

El Niño could re­sult in nor­mal to be­low nor­mal rain­fall this sea­son.

On re­ported chal­lenges in the Com­mand Fish­eries Pro­gramme, Deputy Min­is­ter Har­i­tatos said: “The progress un­der Com­mand Fish­eries has been ham­pered by lack of fund­ing but as­sess­ment of po­ten­tial suit­able dams is un­der­way. Nev­er­the­less, the progress un­der com­mand live­stock is sat­is­fac­tory.”

Pres­i­dent Em­mer­son Mnan­gagwa’s Gov­ern­ment has iden­ti­fied agri­cul­ture as a key sec­tor in the quest to cre­ate an up­per mid­dle-in­come econ­omy by 2030.

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