The Sunday News
Judith Phiri, Business Reporter
THE Department of Agricultural, Technical and Extension Services (Agritex) is monitoring land preparation of close to 150 000 farmers set to receive inputs under the Pfumvudza/Intwasa programme in Matabeleland North Province.
Agritex officer in charge of Matabeleland North and Bulawayo, Mr Dumisani Nyoni said they were sensitising farmers to prepare for the cropping season.
“We are targeting 149 000 smallholder farmers in different parts of Matabeleland North Province to benefit from the Pfumvudza/Intwasa input programme. At the moment we are at a stage where Agritex is sensitising them to prepare for the cropping season,” said Mr Nyoni.
He said that under the programme farmers this year are expected to prepare five plots and get maize or sorghum depending on their location.
Mr Nyoni said the programme encourages farmers to mechanise Pfumvudza/Intwasa, where instead of digging planting basins they can use animal drafts and direct feeders.
He said that they anticipate that towards the end of the October they will be seized with the distribution of inputs to those farmers that would have met the criteria for Pfumvudza /Intwasa programme.
“We are also encouraging farmers when they are complying to procure additional seed fertiliser for their other crops that might not be necessarily under Intwasa or Pfumvudza. Here and there draught animals cannot be in condition to hold the plough we urge farmers to do supplementary feeding of those animals that would be used for draught purposes,” said Mr Nyoni.