Farmers tap into new vegetable varieties

Source: Farmers tap into new vegetable varieties | The Herald

Farmers tap into new vegetable varieties

Elita Chikwati

Agriculture Reporter

Commercial farmers and exporters must do their research before embarking on horticultural production to reduce losses.

This came out yesterday at the Seed Co Vegetables Annual Field at Stapleford Research Station in Mt Hampden.

Lands, Agriculture, Water and Rural Resettlement permanent secretary John Bhasera and SEED CO Vegetables General Manager Felistas Ndavi (left) look at some of the horticulture crops they are producing during a field day in Mt Hampden yesterday. Picture Justin Mutenda

The function, which was hosted by Prime Seed Co trading as Seed Co Vegetables and attended by farmers, traders, input suppliers and related institutions among others presented an opportunity for stakeholders to gather knowledge on crop varieties and market opportunities.

Products on exhibition were varieties of tomatoes, cabbages, kale, butternut, pepper and maize among others.

Officiating at the field day, Lands, Agriculture, Water and Rural Resettlement Secretary Dr John Basera said a key driver to agriculture productivity was the use of appropriate highly productive seeds, which are climate smart and tolerant to pests and diseases.

Lands, Agriculture, Water and Rural Resettlement permanent secretary John Bhasera and SEED CO Vegetables General Manager Felistas Ndavi look at some of the horticulture crops they are producing during a field day in Mt Hampden yesterday. Picture Justin Mutenda

“Choosing the right seed variety for one’s region and cropping systems is one of the most important ingredients for successful farming,” he said.

“I am excited that Prime Seed Co has commercialised above 80 hybrid vegetables and these are premium varieties that are tailor made to meet requirements of each and every farmer in the horticulture space.

“The main focus being on high yielding, excellent disease tolerances, shelf life, field holding capacity and quality.”

Dr Basera encouraged Prime Seed Co to continue with collaborative research efforts with their partners to leverage on their global exposure and take advantage of the facilities and skills they possess.

Prime Seed Co general manager, Ms Felistas Ndawi said since the inception of the company in 2015, Seed Co Vegetables has made a substantial contribution to the horticultural sector through development, production and provision of top quality seed varieties for all agro-ecological zones.

“To date, we have over 80 registered and commercialised hybrid seed varieties in Zimbabwe.

“Seed Co Vegetables represents some leading international seed companies. The company imports, exports and produces seeds in Zimbabwe exporting to various countries,” she said.

She said the company was working towards contributing to the success of the recently launched Agriculture Recovery and Growth Plan.

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