Elita Chikwati Agriculture Reporter
More than 83 percent of the Climate-Proofed Presidential Inputs Scheme popularly known as Pfumvudza beneficiaries have received inputs as the Grain Marketing Board is racing against time to ensure all farmers receive their inputs early.
The Pfumvudza programme is set to benefit 1, 8million households country wide and more than 1, 5 million have received their inputs.
GMB chief executive, Mr Rockie Mutenha said they were working hard to make sure inputs are distributed on time.
“We have a few challenges that may delay us. Inputs are being given to farmers who would have dug holes and some farmers are not yet ready hence cannot be given inputs.
“Suppliers are also overwhelmed as they have to supply Command Agriculture and at the same time supply Pfumvudza, cotton inputs and private retail shops.
“Transporters are limited as they are the same who are also distributing maize for the Department of Social Welfare,” said Mr Mutenha.
Under the Pfumvudza programme, 1 570 823 households have received inputs. GMB has distributed 11 287 tonnes of maize seed, 1 617 tonnes of soya beans, 1 337 tonnes of traditional grains and 107 tonnes of other crops.
“Farmers have also received 52 908 tonnes of Compound D, 14 095 tonnes of ammonium nitrate and 13 593 tonnes of lime,” he said.
Under the Pfumvudza concept, communal farmers will now be required to practise conservation agriculture, a concept also known as Pfumvudza for them to benefit under the Presidential Inputs Scheme as Government moves in to boost agriculture productivity and ensure food self-sufficiency and surplus.
Pfumvudza is a concept that is aimed at climate proofing agriculture by adopting conservation farming techniques and involves the utilisation of small pieces of land and applying the correct agronomic practices for higher returns.
The concept, which will be applied to maize, traditional grains, and soya beans will also commercialise smallholder agriculture.
So far, most farmers under Pfumvudza have completed their plots each with most completing mulching and fertiliser application.
Zimbabwe Commercial Farmers Union president, Mr Shadreck Makombe said the uptake of Pfumvudza had been encouraging.
“Even some independent institutions who are not getting inputs under the programme have also begun practicing conservation agriculture and have dug out holes,” he said.