Government has launched the traditional grains inputs programme at Zanadu Farm in Concession today in an effort to increase food security in light of climate change.
The package of traditional grains formerly referred to as small grains which farmers will receive includes a 10 kilogramme bag of white millet and two bags of fertiliser.
Speaking at launch, which coincided with a wheat field day, Provincial Livestock and Extension Officer, Mr Stancilous Tapererwa explained that farmers will be given the opportunity to choose the grain they wish to cultivate.
“Some will say I don’t want millet give me sorghum and they will get that instead but the aim is for the whole country to receive these inputs”, said Mr Tapererwa
Lands, Agriculture, Water, Climate and Rural Resettlement Minister, Retired Air Chief Marshal Perrance Shiri, who was represented by Minister of ICT, Postal and Courier Services, Cde Kazembe Kazembe, urged farmers to be dedicated.
“We need dedication, commitment and seriousness. Yes we have challenges like drought but at times we fail when there is no drought. Let us also adopt climate smart technologies”, Cde Kazembe urged farmers.
The event also created a platform for farmers to deliberate on good wheat agronomic practices and land preparation for the summer cropping season.
Seedco Agronomist, Wendy Madzura, said wheat is the second most strategic crop so farmers needed to take wheat farming seriously.
Zanadu Farm Manager, Alex Malata, said they faced some challenges due to power cuts and took longer on the 21 days cycles.
The summer cropping season is expected to be characterised by normal to above normal rainfall in the first half and normal to below normal rains in the second part of the season.
Small grains are ranked second staple cereal crops after maize in Zimbabwe and play a vital role in the country’s food security and nutrition.