MASVINGO - Over 10 000 farmers are set to benefit from the Presidential Winter Wheat Input Scheme which is expected to begin in May, the Minister of State for Masvingo Provincial Affairs and Devolution has said.
Through the programme, government will distribute wheat to farmers especially those with irrigation facilities as well as those on wetlands.
“The government is handing out wheat to those farmers in irrigation schemes, those who are in communal gardens and also individuals who have access to water. The idea is to increase our wheat output this year because government is determined to reduce our wheat import bill while empowering local farmers,” said Chadzamira.
He said some 10 000 farmers in A1 and A2 plots are expected to benefit from the scheme which would require farmers to deliver their grain to the Grain Marketing Board after harvest.
“Over 10 000 farmers are expected to benefit from this winter wheat programme and we are targeting capable farmers in A1 and A2 farms,” said Chadzamira.
Each farmer is expected to receive 60kg of wheat crop per hectare of land they can till depending with the size of the farm.
“Each farmer is expected to receive 60kg of wheat per hectare depending on the size of the farm each farmer has. The bigger the size of the farm each farmer has the more wheat each farmer will get,” said Chadzamira.
Zimbabwe has a serious wheat shortage as local farmers cannot satisfy demand the domestic market.
Every year, big confectioners have to import thousands of tonnes of wheat from such countries as Brazil to plug the gap, costing the country millions of dollars in foreign currency.