The Herald (Harare)

9 November 2012

Zimbabwe: Pioneer to Cut Seed Production

Pioneer Hi-Bred Zimbabwe will this season reduce seed production by 50 percent due to over supply of the commodity on the market.

The company whose market share has grown from 12 percent to 30 percent said it was better to reduce production this season to avoid incurring losses. Speaking at a recent farmer's meeting in Harare, the company's production manager Mr Zivanayi Sigwadhi said the company had 8 300 tonnes of maize seed in stock.

"The seed industry currently has nearly 66 000 tonnes of seed while the national requirement is 35 000 tonnes.

"The market can not absorb all the seed and we are going to have carry over seed which will require good handling to reduce losses," he said.

Mr Sigwadhi said the company planned to grow 2 000 hectares of seed maize during the 2012/13 season.

The hacterage would however, be cut to 1 000 hectares due to the current volumes.

He said the move was not permanent. Mr Sigwadhi said the company would increase production depending with available volumes and market requirements. Next season, the company would require seed producers to provide their workers with protective clothing to ensure worker safety.

"We are also going to train farmers and workers on the importance of safety on the farm and importance of protective clothing."

He said this would motivate workers. Pioneer Hi-Bred will provide its seed growers with protective equipment and clothing and farmers will pay back later.

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