The success of the previous crop year has been laid bare as evidenced by the saturation of key food grains, which are usually out of stock at this time of year.
President Mnangagwa’s administration introduced transformative measures in the agricultural sector anchored in achieving food security in the country and a return to self-sufficiency.
They include, among others, the Agriculture Command – contract farming aimed at supporting local farmers, the Pfumvudza Concept – a concept of increasing production with minimal resources while emphasizing protection against climate change.
The Second Republic also implemented irrigation rehabilitation programs, soil and water conservation initiatives among a host of others that increased production.
In separate interviews, various stakeholders attributed the current availability of key consumption grains during the holiday season to a successful and well-planned Pfumvudza season in the previous cropping season.
Grain Millers Association of Zimbabwe (GMAZ) National President Tafadzwa Musarara said their adequate preparation to supply the market during this festive season was the result of a successful farming season.
âWe are happy to inform our consuming public that there are more than enough stocks of corn flour, bread, flour, self-rising flour, rice, salt, sugar beans and beans. feed for livestock.
âZimbabwe has had a bumper harvest and there is no way we can have a shortage of our produce, the credit should go to the government as they have been successful in ensuring the food sufficiency.
âThe government has been very successful in ensuring the availability of food and I think we should applaud the efforts of President Mnangagwa and his government,â Musarara said.
He said President Mnangagwa has succeeded in ensuring the availability of food in a short period of time, making the dream of reaching an upper middle income society by 2030 a reality.
Zimbabwe Retail Confederation (CZR) President Denford Mutashu praised the government, suppliers and manufacturers for ensuring that the supply chain remains intact.
âManufacturers and suppliers have responded to demand and made sure that there is no shortage and that there is no price increase during this time.
“We are working closely with our suppliers to ensure that the issues we have encountered in the past, for example product sourcing issues, are addressed,” said Mr. Mutashu.
He said the planning, however, was made possible by the availability of produce locally, hailing the government for a successful summer harvest season after supporting local farmers to increase production.
Cornmeal, flour, wheat, beans, small grains, bread, sugar, cooking oil, rice and even animal feed are among the products whose prices have fallen in recent weeks. , relieving consumers who had become accustomed to price changes as they lined up to pay at checkouts.
The supply of goods has also normalized, with most supermarkets now fully stocked, leading to the elimination of a black market for some products.
Although the prices of some products increase due to the inability of importers to access formal market currencies, the margin for increase is not substantial.
Zimbabwe’s National Chamber of Commerce President Dr Tinashe Manzungu said the country was on track to return to a mainland food basket.
He said President Mnangagwa’s administration had succeeded in transforming “the art of farming and farming methods, managed by skilled, dedicated and resourceful professional farmers.”
âThe products, especially those from local farmers, are readily available and the prices for these locally produced products are generally fair, this should be attributed to a successful farming season.
âZimbabwe has done well in supporting the local market and with the agricultural initiatives put in place by the government, we are now also very competitive exporters on the world stage, these exports are important because they bring foreign currency to the economy. “Said Dr Manzungu.
He said sustainable economic growth should be based on exports and praised the agricultural sector for being on the right track for a competitive return to exporting its products to the world.
The availability of the products in the market brought Christmas cheer to people and some who spoke to The Herald endorsed the Second Republic initiatives.
Ms Jessica Vheremu said: “Usually when it’s Christmas we buy in bulk, that’s the norm. We want to spend and stock for our families, the basics will usually not be available anymore but we are happy that they are available. “
“Some foods are expensive, but the basics are still available, such as corn flour, flour, popcorn, beans, salt and bread.”
Ms. Audrey Matubvunye praised the performance of local farmers.
âSome things are a bit expensive, but I think most of them are imports. However, the products we get from local farmers are quite affordable things like cornmeal, flour, popcorn, bread, veg, and all greens.
âThe government has done well to support local farmers and I think they should do more to bring us to a point where we shouldn’t be importing food,â Ms. Matubvunye said.
A farmer, Mr Sylvester Dutiro, said the produce they brought to the Grain Marketing Board (GMB) was enough to stop the shortages seen previously.
âThe government has done well to support the farmers and it is showing now because of the availability of food in the stores.
âI myself am a farmer although it is largely a subsistence level, I received inputs from the government and we sold our products to GMB.
âIt is not possible that we will have shortages because of the amount of grain produced by farmers. We are satisfied with what the government is doing and we want it to continue, âsaid Mr. Dutiro.