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Zimbabwe Agriculture Minister: Government, Icrisat Should Unite Against Hunger, Poverty And Malnutrition
Sunday, 2021/05/02 | 05:46:22

Figure: ICRISAT staff show the Minister different crop varieties. Photo: ICRISAT.

 

Dr Anxious Masuka, Zimbabwe’s Minister of Lands, Agriculture, Fisheries, Water and Rural Resettlement, during a recent visit to the ICRISAT Matopos Research Center, called for continued close collaboration between the Government of Zimbabwe and ICRISAT to ensure the benefits of research quickly reach poorly-resourced communal farmers and help Zimbabwe achieve a middle income economy by 2030.

 

Dr Masuka informed that 70% of Zimbabwe’s population depends on agriculture and most of these are small-scale and communal farmers in the drier parts of the country. This group is set to benefit from the products and innovations developed by ICRISAT, he said.

 

Dr Martin Moyo, Senior Scientist-Farming Systems and ICRISAT’s Country Representative- Zimbabwe, articulated the institute’s country strategy for Zimbabwe that hinges on four research themes- Developing high yielding crop varieties with traits preferred by farmers and the markets for food, feed & fodder; Developing production systems and management practices that enhance smallholder farmers’ resilience to climate shocks; Developing adaptation strategies for sustainable and productive integrated crop-livestock systems; and Improving watershed management in dryland systems.

 

Dr Hapson Mushoriwa, Principal Scientist & Regional Breeding Theme Lead – East and Southern Africa (ESA), talked about ICRISAT’s ESA Crop Improvement Program, which has its regional hub at ICRISAT Matopos. He said the main focus is on improving yields under drought and poor soil nutrition, developing biofortified products that are highly nutritious, with special focus on iron, zinc and calcium since these are essential for pregnant women and young children, and developing products that fit well in crop-livestock farming systems. He also showed the delegation some of the state-of-the-art machinery- XRF machine, an NIRS analyzer and seed blowers- that ICRISAT recently acquired to support its breeding efforts.

 

See more: https://www.icrisat.org/zimbabwe-agriculture-minister-government-icrisat-should-unite-against-hunger-poverty-and-malnutrition/

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