The Sunday News
Rutendo Nyeve, Sunday News Reporter
THE Pfumvudza/Intwasa climate proofing programme continues to witness an increase in uptake with nearly six million plots having been prepared so far, a latest Ministry of Lands, Agriculture, Fisheries, Water and Rural development report has revealed.
With Government targeting 3,5 million households for this year’s Pfumvudza/Intwasa programme, the distribution of inputs continues with 93 percent of the target number having received the inputs to date.
According to a latest Agricultural and Rural Development Advisory Directorate report 17 179 metric tonnes of maize seed has been received.
“Total number of plots prepared for the Pfumvudza/Intwasa are 5,9 million. The Ministry has a target of 14 868 metric tons of maize seed to be distributed and 17 179 metric tons have been received marking a 116 percent received of the target. 13 786 metric tons of the number received has so far been distributed,” reads the report.
The Ministry of Lands, Agriculture, Fisheries, Water and Rural development has also joined forces with key stakeholders such as Agricultural Advisory and Rural Development Services (Ardas), Grain Marketing Board (GMB) and the Agricultural Marketing Authority (AMA) to ensure the process is closely monitored.
The GMB, which was awarded the contract to distribute inputs for the 2022/23 summer cropping season continues to distribute with Government saying the process is going on well with the Ministry of Agriculture remodeling the distribution chain to promote traceability and accountability.
Chief Director Agricultural and Rural Development Advisory Services in the Ministry, Professor Obert Jiri told Sunday News last week that the inputs distribution target was on course.
“We are witnessing good progress in the distribution of inputs, target is on course, and the distribution is smooth,” said Prof Jiri.
Meanwhile, Government has given the first African armyworm outbreak notification alert.
“The first African armyworm outbreak was received from Mbire District (Ward 6 — Kasuo) of Mashonaland Central Province on 24 December 2022. The pest was attacking maize (15 hectares), sorghum (110 hectares) and pastures (5 hectares) thus threatening food security”
“Samples of the pest collected by Migratory Pests and Biosecurity Control Department revealed that the pest was in its first to fourth instar stages at densities of 40-50 larvae per square metre attacking early crops of maize as well as grazing lands,” said Prof Jiri.
He said a total of 80 kilograms of Carbaryl have been delivered to the affected areas for control of the pest.
“There is 429 kilograms Carbaryl 85 percent are in stock for the management of African armyworm this 2022-23 cropping season. African armyworm forecasting is in progress for other provinces for early warning with no outbreaks having been reported in these areas,” said Prof Jiri.
Most farmers throughout the country are still planting their crops and the established crops are at early vegetative stages, making them susceptible to African armyworm damage.
Government has notified that moth catches continue to be recorded in Mashonaland West and there is high possibility of more African armyworm outbreaks occurring in other parts of the country. — @nyeve14