Zimbabwean farmers have earned US $4.6m from tobacco sales. The growers have reportedly sold 2.6m kgs at the auction and contract floors. Moreover, according to the Tobacco Industry and Marketing Board’s latest statistics, the bulk of the crop has been sold through the contract floors.
The statistics show that 1.4m kg worth US $2.5m was sold through the contract floors while 1.2m kg worth US $2.1m was sold through the contract system. This is since the opening of the 2019 marketing season two weeks ago.
The highest price at the action floors has remained at US $4.50 per kilogram while contractors have offered a highest price of US $5 per kilogram. However, it has been noted that tobacco deliveries are low this season compared to the same period last year, when farmers had sold 12.3m kg worth US $34m.
Fortunately, there have been some improvements in the deliveries by farmers to the auction floors following the Government’s removal of the 2% charge on all transactions.
The 2019 tobacco crop was grown under grim weather conditions characterized by late rains and prolonged dry spells especially when the crop was almost ready for reaping.
Tobacco production has been on the increase in the past years with Government coming up with programs to promote value addition to increase foreign currency earnings through increased export.
The Second Republic’s thrust is to develop an infrastructure that supports a thriving and open economy, which is capable of creating new opportunities for investors and more employment.
A record 252m kg was last year delivered to the auction floors compared to previous record of 231m kilograms in 2000. This season, stakeholders in the tobacco industry are expecting between 240m and 260m kilograms.