Government has expressed satisfaction with preparations for the 2020/2021 summer agricultural season with 2.2 million families being recruited and trained under the ‘Pfumvudza’ programme.
Addressing a post-Cabinet media briefing in Harare Tuesday afternoon, Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Minister Monica Mutsvangwa said Cabinet noted progress registered in various government programmes.
The programmes include Pfumvudza Programme and National Enhanced Crop Productivity Programme Command or Smart Agriculture Programme, Presidential Cotton Programme, Tobacco sector programme, livestock growth plan and the mechanization support programme.
“Regarding the Pfumvudza Programme, Cabinet was informed that households supported under the Programme had increased from 1.8 million to 2.2 million.
“All the 2.2 million families enrolled had been automatically entered in the Pfumvudza competition for all the crops. A total of 2 139 275 households had been trained on Pfumvudza.”
Mutsvangwa said the recently revived Zunde raMambo concept’s inputs were already being rolled out to 286 chiefs across the country.
According to the update, the National Enhanced Crop Productivity Programme’s target of the 290 000 hectares, 285 440 hectares had been registered by 11 829 farmers while 43 067 hectares had been registered for soya bean out of the targeted 60 000 hectares by 932 farmers.
Mutsvangwa revealed that farmers had already started receiving inputs with the Cabinet’s approval.
“The farmers had received maize seed, soya beans seed, basal fertilizer, soya blend, and top-dressing fertilizer.
“Pertaining to the Presidential Cotton Programme, Cabinet approved cotton ‘Pfumvudza’ pack comprising 6kg seed, 80kg basal fertiliser, 40kg top dressing and the prerequisite herbicides and chemicals reducing the seed allocation from 20kg seed to match fertilizers provided,” she said.
Mutsvangwa said a total area of 28 292 hectares had been planted as at November 25, 2020 with 127 231 growers being registered for the 2020/2021 season compared to 27 181 hectares having been planted while 139 606 farmers registered last season.
Under the Livestock Growth Plan, government recently launched the Presidential Blitz Tick Grease Scheme, Dip tank rehabilitation, genetic improvement and borehole drilling.
In the programme’s inception, 34 bulls were distributed to 34 traditional leaders in Matabeleland South.
Mutsvangwa said while government was expecting 474 tractors under the Belarus Facility a total of 450 tractors had been received for distribution to farmers through designated banks.