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Monday, June 17, 2024
HomeNewsZimbabwe National Seed Fair Celebrates the Wonder of Millets

Zimbabwe National Seed Fair Celebrates the Wonder of Millets

The Government says traditional grains have a positive impact in strengthening the country’s national food security and promoting small-scale farmers’ seed sovereignty and resilience, adapting to climate change.

Speaking during the 11th edition of the Zimbabwe National Seed Fair, held recently under the theme “Celebrating the wonder of Zimbabwean Millets” guest of honor, Hilda Manditsvara, Chief Crop Production Specialist in the Ministry of Lands, Agriculture, Fisheries, Water, Climate, and Rural Development said the country had witnessed an impressive increase in traditional grain production last season.

“The promotion of millets and traditional food will help Zimbabwe in strengthening household and national food security, promoting small-scale farmers’ seed sovereignty and resilience, adapting to climate change, and achieving sustainable development.”

“This last farming season alone, the nation managed to harvest 280,966 metric tonnes of traditional grains, up from 194,100 metric tonnes in the 2021-2022 season. This is a commendable upward trajectory in the production of small grains,” Manditsvara proudly announced.

Manditsvara firmly advocated for the adoption and embrace of traditional millet varieties, affirming the government’s commitment to supporting this endeavor.

She also took the opportunity to commend the efforts of Participatory Ecological Land Use Management (PELUM), an advocacy farming body that champions the interests of smallholder farmers, especially regarding small grains seeds.

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“We commend the work being done by PELUM Zimbabwe network and the Zimbabwe seed sovereignty program with other partners in promoting the growing and consumption of local indigenous and traditional foods through such events. It is our responsibility to ensure that future generations are food secure and sovereign. Millets are an immediate answer to the threat of food insecurity amidst climate change,” she added.

The Zimbabwe National Seed Fair is an annual event that brings together smallholder farmers from across the country.

Its primary goals include promoting small grain production, developing markets for these crops, and strengthening seed systems for these essential staples.

This year’s celebrations centered around Svoboda, a millet crop that has been successfully revived in Masvingo’s Bikita area.

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