Flue-cured harvesting set to begin

| November 16, 2016

Harvesting of Zimbabwe’s irrigated flue-cured tobacco is expected to start at the end of this month, according to a story in The Chronicle.

Agronomist and tobacco expert, Thomas Nherera, was quoted as saying that despite their being equipped to use irrigation, some farmers had had trouble in obtaining water because some sources had dried up during a long dry-spell experienced across the country.

“Generally, water was the major challenge during the irrigated crop planting season,” said Nherera.

“Most of the streams dried-up, but those farmers whose seedlings managed to survive the harsh dry conditions did very well after transplanting.”

Nherera said planting of the rain-fed tobacco was presently underway.

Traditionally, tobacco planting ends on December 31.

Meanwhile, the Tobacco Industry and Marketing Board has indicated that as of November 11, 72,575 farmers had registered to grow flue-cured during the 2016/17 season.

During the 2015/16 season, 73,343 growers delivered 202 million kg of flue-cured, earning just short of US$600 million from their tobacco sales.

And the central bank has announced that tobacco farmers who sold their crop during the 2016 marketing season will receive by the end of this month a cumulative $30 million as export incentives.

The export incentive seeks to reward tobacco growers with a five percent bonus on the foreign currency their tobacco generates.

Foreign currency reserves go down in tobacco’s off-season and the governor of the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe, Dr. John Mangudya, has suggested that stakeholders in the tobacco sector should consider opening sales floors earlier to ease the cash shortages.

Category: Breaking News

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