The horticulture sector in Umguza has experienced one of the worst festive seasons as vegetables have been rotting in the fields due a sharp drop in demand in Bulawayo due to cash shortages.
The cash shortages currently prevailing in the country have seen some vegetable vendors unsuccessfully attempting to buy them from farmers using electronic means.
However, the majority of farmers do not have point of sale machines (POS) and prefer cash, hence the sharp decline in the demand for vegetables.
The situation has seen some farmers reducing the prices of vegetables with some selling 10 cabbages for $1 but this has not stimulated demand.
Umguza Irrigation Farmers Association Chairperson, Mr Falakhe Dube confirmed that farmers have been forced by the situation to reduce the vegetable prices and have therefore incurred huge losses.
“Some of the vegetables are rotting. I can even take you into the field and you see for yourself what happened when we couldn’t get a market for the vegetables,” Mr Dube told the ZBC reporter.
Farmers had hoped to make good business during the festive season, but all hope has been lost and it is once again another blow for the horticulture sector.