Over 57 000 tonnes of seed will be availed this summer cropping season with the Zimbabwe Seed Traders Association confirming seed companies are ready for the 2017-18 agriculture programmes.

Seed houses have confirmed they are ready for the summer season with a combined 57 000 tonnes of maize seed, soya, sugar beans, sorghum and ground nuts set to be availed for the season.

Zimbabwe Seed Traders Association chairman, Mr Denias Zaranyika said last year 35 000 tonnes of maize was supplied and the industry is ready to surpass that figure.

The only challenges for suppliers lie in groundnuts were there are only 500 tonnes with volumes needing to be increased to at least 2 000 tonnes.

Seed producers have been spending as high as US$8 million per year in research and development of hybrid varieties.

Besides the seed houses, fertiliser and equipment companies are also ready for the season as the command agriculture initiative is set to boost industrial capacity utilisation to around 70 percent.