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Only 22,2% urban households involved in urban agriculture

by Stephen Jakes
01 Dec 2023 at 17:43hrs | Views
About 22.2% of households were involved in urban agriculture.

This is revealed in the Zimbabwe Vulnerability Assessment Committee (ZimVAC) 2023 report which noted that therefore, the Government through the Ministry responsible for Agriculture needs to come up with Urban Agriculture Policies and strategies, ensure they are disseminated and that urban farmers receive the necessary support to improve food and nutrition security at household level.

"The proportion of households engaged in livestock production was 0.5%. Hence, it is recommended that the Ministry responsible for Agriculture should implement strategies that promote the rearing of small livestock such as chickens, fish, guinea pigs and rabbits as this contributes to the national key result area of food and nutrition security," reads the report.

"This initiative will go along way in improving the proportion of households consuming protein and iron rich foods. 16. Private Sector participation in urban agriculture is very low in terms of information dissemination for crop inputs (0.5%), crop production (0.3%) and crop markets (0.4%). It is therefore recommended that the Government should craft favourable policies/strategies that ensure participation of the Private Sector through Private Public Partnerships that aim to ensure inclusivity of urban farmers in the agriculture value chain."

The report states that only 40.2% of households reported receiving early warning information and 26% utilised it to develop a response plan.

"The Department of Civil Protection needs to come up with innovative ways to disseminate early warning information. The proportion of households practising urban agriculture increased from 19% in 2020 to 22% in 2023. Mashonaland East (47%) and Manicaland (36%) had the highest proportion of households practising urban agriculture," reads the report.

"The major reason why urban households were not practising urban agriculture was no access to land (55.9%). The proportion of households practising crop/horticulture production was 20.2% and livestock production was 0.5%."

Zimvac reported that the highest proportion of households engaged in urban agriculture grew maize (9.6%) and green leafy vegetables (5.8%) as food crops.

"Mashonaland Central (16.3%) and Matabeleland South (11.7%) had the highest proportion of urban households that grew maize as food crop. Of those households which received inputs from Government, 9.7% received seed, 6.6% received Compound D, 3.7% received Ammonium Nitrate and 0.2% received pesticides," reads the report.

"Friends and relatives and Government extension agents were the most common sources of information for both crop inputs and crop market information. In terms of livestock diseases information, urban households accessed information from Government extension agents (17.6%), friends and relatives (15.3%). Information on livestock input was accessed from friends and relatives (17.7%) and Government extension agents (14.6%)."

The report states that the majority of households accessed their staple food (grain/mealie meal) from the local grocery shops/ tuckshops (43.9%) and supermarkets (21%).

"About 8.2% of households were relying on grain from own production," it reads.

Source - Byo24News