Clinton Moyo, Business Reporter
HEALTH Excellence Agriculture in collaboration with the Ministry of Women and Youth Affairs has started a goat production husbandry and marketing training programme for women in Umguza District to improve their knowledge in rearing goats.
Health Excellence Agriculture programmes coordinator Mr Dingaan Ndlovu said they were targeting that each ward in the district produce 200 goats per annum as well as to capacitate women to be self sufficient.
“The idea behind this training is to capacitate the communities to be self sufficient and increase the quality and quantity of goats in the region. We are mainly prioritising women and youths. Each group of women per ward should be producing about 100 to 200 goats under the breeding groups which we have encouraged them to form,” he said.
This comes at a time when Zimbabwe is failing to satisfy the goat export market.
The country needs to export meat from at least 1 500 goats per week to meet the demand in the United Arab Emirates, Uganda and Angola with Angola alone requiring 25 tonnes per week.
The export price of goat meat ranges from $9 to $10 per kilogramme.
Mr Ndlovu also urged local agro-based companies to support goat farmers.
“We are also calling upon agro-based companies to practice social corporate responsibility because these farmers are their clients and they get money from them hence they should support them,” he said.
Umguza Women Affairs’ chairperson Mrs Silethukuhle Moyo said the workshop was necessary to remove the donor syndrome among community members.
“The problem that community members have that we are trying to eradicate is that they should stop looking for donors to come and help them. In this workshop they have been taught how to make use of their resources because women take care of chicken and goats at home.
“During the workshop they were taught how to manage diseases that affect their goats and so forth which will enable them to make money out of their goats as they multiply,” she said.
Cde Sikhanyisiwe Mpofu who offered her plot for the workshop said rural women rarely get chances to be equipped with such important knowledge.
“We are glad that we invited them to have their workshop here because people in the rural areas usually do not have the opportunity to get business ideas like people in the urban areas. This workshop will ensure that they change their lives and stop depending on donors,” she said.
Speaking during the same event, National Leather Working Group chairperson, Mr Jacob Andreas Nyathi, said there was a need for value addition for the goat farmers to gain fully from their goats.