Tobacco grower registrations down in Zimbabwe

| November 24, 2015

The number of Zimbabwean farmers who have registered so far this year to grow tobacco is down by more than 20 percent on the number who had signed up by the same point of last year’s registration period, according to a Newsdzesibabwe story.

In its latest bulletin, the Tobacco Industry and Marketing Board (TIMB) said 69,092 farmers had so far registered for the 2015-16 season, down from the 86,992 who had registered by the same point of last year.

New registrations were said to be down from 16,140 to 8,755.

About 15,421 ha have been put under tobacco so far this year, which is said to indicate that more growers are shifting to irrigation to mitigate the effects of uncertain rainfall.

Earlier this year, many flue-cured Virginia growers complained about what they saw as the poor prices being paid for their 2014-15 tobacco – prices that did not cover the cost of production.

Buyers on the other hand complained that the tobacco on offer generally was of low quality, in part due to the weather conditions.

It is almost certain, however, that a worldwide oversupply of flue-cured tobacco was a major factor in prices being down.

A reduced grower base in Zimbabwe will help bring about a better supply/demand balance, especially with growers in Brazil having suffered some unhelpful weather conditions.

Category: Breaking News

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