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Few Winter Wheat Farmers Meet Planting Deadline

  • Jonga Kandemiiri

Agriculture experts predict a very low wheat harvest this year due to the decline in winter wheat production as most farmers failed to meet this year’s planting deadline of May 15.

The farmers could not buy inputs on time as they failed to access funds from banks and the government.

Last week, the Bankers Association of Zimbabwe said banks were failing to lend the agricultural sector loans because of the short-term tenure of deposits in the banking sector.

Farmer and Uzumba Member of Parliament Simbaneuta Mudarikwa of Zanu-PF said sanctions imposed on Harare by the West have hurt the banking sector forcing it to abandon farmers.

Mudarikwa said the few farmers that have managed to plant the crop are using their own resources.
But chairperson of the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Agriculture and also Chikomba Central legislator, Moses Jiri of the MDC-T disagreed with Mr. Mudarikwa on the sanctions issue and blamed bad government policies.

Mr. Jiri said wheat farmers should also benefit from contract farming, just like tobacco and cotton cultivation.
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