Tobacco Sales Floors Still Open!
MOP up tobacco sales will continue every Wednesday at all sales floors until all farmer produce is sold, the Cabinet declared yesterday.
The decision followed the shutdown of daily sales last week, but in response to farmers’ worries that they had yet to sell their produce, Cabinet ordered that they be permitted to do so in order to avoid imminent losses.
Cabinet also stated that there is enough wheat in the country to cover local needs, although millers are free to import if they so want.
Monica Mutsvangwa, Minister of Information, Publicity, and Broadcasting Services, acknowledged these changes during yesterday’s Cabinet meeting.
“Pertaining to tobacco production and marketing, 188 million kilogrammes of tobacco worth US$572.3 million have been sold to date. Daily auction sales closed on July 20 2022, but mop up sales will continue every Wednesday at all sales floors until all the tobacco has been sold.
“As at July 20 2022, tobacco merchants had exported a total of 84 227 566 kilogrammes of tobacco valued at US$398 595 501, compared to 73 238 993 kilogrammes exported during the same period last year, with a value of US$ 286 312 965”
According to Minister Mutsvangwa, 97 percent of the tobacco crop will be farmed under contract this summer.
She stated that the production area is predicted to be 129 500ha, with a volume of 190 to 200 million kilogrammes of flue-cured tobacco versus a tobacco transformation plan objective of 275 million kg.
According to Minister Mutsvangwa, the major enablers for the summer project include fertiliser supplies, mechanisation, irrigation assistance programmes, and extension worker and farmer capacity building.
She stated that grain supplies were 450 407 tonnes as of Monday, with 393 183 tonnes of maize and 57 223 tonnes of traditional grains.
Minister Mutsvangwa said farmer payments of $2 166 980 068,10 and US$3 687 793 were availed by Treasury while whole grain delivered was valued at US$3 752 460, giving an outstanding balance of US$64 486,42.
“The closing wheat stocks stand at 33 268 tonnes and wheat stocks are sufficient for local requirements, however, millers should import at least 9 000 tonnes monthly,” she said.
“The country has a wheat crop record of 78 798ha which is 8213ha above the previous record crop of 70 585ha achieved in 2004.
“Regarding cotton marketing, a total of 39 070 236 kilogrammes of seed cotton has been purchased at the common buying points across the country compared to 66 615 999 kilogrammes last year.”
Meanwhile, Minister Mutsvangwa said flocks of the problematic quelea birds have been spotted in Kwekwe District, Midlands Province and Hurungwe District in Mashonaland West Province.
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