Province increases tobacco hectarage

Staff Writer

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MARONDERA- Nearly 20 000 hectares of tobacco was planted this season, marking a 12
percent increase from last season’s hectarage, Agricultural Advisory and Rural Development
Services (AARDS) acting director for Mashonaland East Province, Leonard Munamati has
said.
He told this publication that the province has also managed to put January disease under
control.
“For tobacco, the area planted is 19 215ha of which 7494 is under irrigation while, 11721 ha
is dry land. This signifies a 12 percent increase from last year, same period where 17 121 ha
was under irrigation and 10105 ha on dry land.
“Planting of dry land was complete by December and we are finalising on collection of
information on actual area planted. Legislation requires farmers to have destroyed their
seedbeds by December 31, 2022.
“Still on tobacco, reaping and curing of irrigated crop has already started and is going on
well and the crop condition of the crop is good.”
Commenting on the livestock side, Munamati said the province has enough dipping
chemicals for cattle which can last up to May this year.
“The condition of livestock in the province is good due to improved grazing and good health
care. During this time of the season, farmers must take their cattle for dipping every week
and as a province, we have enough acaricides for use up to the end of May this year. We
also have tick grease that was distributed under the Presidential Tick Grease Blitz.
“As at end of December last year, the Province had distributed 99 062 kg of tick grease to
stock owners. Distribution will continue and as it stands, January disease is currently under
control and we just urge farmers to bring cattle for dipping every week,” he said.

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