Gvt expands command agriculture to soya beans

The Zimbabwe government has expanded  command agriculture to include soya beans with the aim of stopping the  importation of the crop, which is used for a number of purposes in the  country, an official has said.

The move is expected to stop the importation of soya beans by May next  year on the back of increased production.

Agriculture, Mechanization and Irrigation Development deputy Minister  responsible for cropping Davis Marapira said by May next  year, importation of soya beans whould stop following the government  intervention.

“Government has also extended soya beans into the Command Agriculture  program to increase output. We are expecting to stop importation of soya  beans by May next year when we start harvesting,” he said.

The government is leading mobilization of $150 million required for the 2017/18 Command Soya Bean Scheme.

Statistics show that the country spent $19 million importing soya bean  in the first eight months of this year.

Soya beans is a critical raw material in the production of edible oil  as well as for numerous industrial purposes.

Zimbabwean farmers are producing an average of 30 000 tons of the crop,  against a national requirement of 300 000 tons.

The government has since set up a Soyabean Promotion Taskforce to  promote production of the crop among smallholder farmers. – New Ziana

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