ZAKA – The Zimbabwe Farmers Union (ZFC) Zaka district chairperson Stephen Mkachana has urged the local Grain Marketing Board (GMB) depot to open up selling points around the district so as to cushion farmers from the high transport cost of transporting their grain to Jerera.
Speaking at the Zaka Agricultural Show held at Ferry Training Centre last week, Mkachana said farmers maintaining Jerera as the only depot was bad for those in far-away places.
“As ZFU, we have observed that farmers are facing challenges delivering their produce. GMB this year failed to decentralise buying points. We are therefore urging GMB to open more selling points in wards to reduce transport costs,” said Mkachana.
He also urged farmers to adopt new farming technologies and heed advice and warnings from the Meteorological Services Department (MSD).
“We encourage farmers to adopt new farming technologies and take advice from Meteorological Services Department and our local extension staff. There is also need to diversify to livestock-oriented projects like cattle fattening and goat farming,” Mukachana said.
He lamented partisan distribution of Command Agricultural inputs, saying the practice ha led to reduced yields in the 2017/2018 season.
“We encourage the government to find proper ways to distribute farming inputs, which is the extension staff in consultation of councillors and traditional leaders. This will make our command agriculture to become a successful programme,” said Mkachana
The Jerera GMB depot has of late been in the news all for the wrong reasons related to poor service delivery and corruption allegedly by seniour management.
At the show, Seedco donated one tonne of seeds which was distributed in the form of prizes for winners.
The seed company recently launched a farming application to help farmers with farming news, weather and markets information.local