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Zimbabwe to see cotton production pull through

YarnsandFibers News Bureau 2014-02-10 13:00:00 – Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe are look ahead to good harvest this season especially in areas such as Dande, Gokwe and Muzarabani with over 200 000 hectares of the cotton crop have been planted.

While according to the Zimbabwe National Farmers Union vice president Mr Garikayi Msika, they were anticipating more cotton to come from the traditional growing areas.

Although a number of farmers have overlooked cotton production due to low prices, farmers unions are convinced the shift will not do much to affect production.

As per the Zimbabwe Commercial Farmers' Union vice president Mr Johnson Mapira, to boost cotton production there is an urgent need for financial and educational support to farmers.

Financial can be used to buy new technological equipment to improve the quality of the crop hybrid and more research stations need to be set up.

Zimbabwe needs to constantly promote cotton growers to boost the textile industry to catch up with China, one of the leading cotton producers in the world.

A ZFU official said that some companies were encouraging side marketing as they were buying cotton whose growing they did not support. Hence, the Agricultural Marketing Authority has also advised registered cotton buyers to pay prices above the agreed prices in line with the market standard.

This season as producer prices remained low, there was no joy for cotton, maize and wheat farmers forcing them to switch to the more lucrative tobacco crop. The favourable tobacco price has attracted many farmers, especially those who had been growing cotton.

If this practice continues, it is sure to further affect cotton production which has dropped by 48 percent due to the low prices.

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