6 June 2019

Zimbabwe: Zim Farmers Under Pressure to Sell Stock Amid Drought Fears

Chiredzi — Farmers in Zimbabwe's dry regions have been urged to sell some of their cattle and buy significant amounts of stock-feeds as measures to thwart recurring drought.

The advice comes amid projections of a serious food deficit between August and November.

Callisto Gwanetsa, the Member of Parliament (MP) for Chiredzi South located southeast of the country, urged farmers in the region to retain manageable herds.

"Farmers should just ensure that they avoid loses by selling some of their beasts and remain with those that they can manage," the legislator said.

Chief Sengwe advised farmers to ensure they had lots of stockfeed in the form of hey or silage.

He said despite the advice they were getting from farmers unions, it was evident the pastures would not be enough to sustain livestock through to the next rainy season.

"We urge farmers to stock a lot of stock feed and also sell part of their herd," said the traditional chief.

Besides waning pastures, the foot and mouth disease also poses a major risk to livestock in the Lowveld region.

Dr Kudakwashe Makwangudze, the Chiredzi district veterinary official, said the ban on the movement of cattle remained in force.

Chiredzi is alongside Mwenezi district, the cattle-rearing hub in the Masvingo Province and entire country.

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