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Nothing changed for sugarcane as a strategic crop – MP

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Nothing changed for sugarcane as a strategic crop – MP



CHREDZI – Government has not intervened to support sugarcane farmers even after declaring the product, a strategic crop, Chiredzi West Zanu MP, Darlington Chiwa has said.
Government declared sugarcane, a strategic crop in 2021.
Strategic crops are crops that are immensely supported by Government including providing inputs and some of them are tobacco and wheat. Sugarcane farmers are calling for managed loadshedding as happens with tobacco and wheat.
Chiwa who was speaking at a media tour of Tongaat Hullet operations in Chiredzi on Friday said that tobacco and wheat farmers receive support from Government. He called on Government to come in and support small scale sugarcane farmers in particular in order to grow the industry.
He said that sugarcane farmers need support as inputs.
“Sugarcane as a strategic crop over and above the pronounciation that sugarcane is a strategic crop, as farmers, as industry, as the MP I would expect Government to further disignate the interventions associated with strategic status. That’s my view,”said Chiwa.
Chiwa later told The Mirror that nothing has changed since the declaration of sugarcane as a strategic crop. He said farmers are not getting any benefits.
“Other strategic crops get attention. The Minister of Agriculture never misses the opening of the season of tobacco and wheat but the same does not apply to sugarcane.
“The move to declare sugarcane as a strategic crop was mearnt to wipe out challenges faced by the sugar industry easpecially small scale farmers in terms of sourcing inputs,” said Chiwa.
There are more than 1200 small scale sugarcane farmers and they contribute 40% to the total production.

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