By ZBC Reporter
Government is pushing for enhanced production of the sunflower crop, as part of efforts to reduce the country’s huge import bill on cooking oil.
According to Lands, Agriculture, Water Fisheries and Rural Development Minister Dr Anxious Masuka, the country imports cooking oil worth 200 000 000 United States Dollars annually.
As such, government is pushing for the production of sunflower, a key raw material for cooking oil in order to cut the import bill.
Dr Masuka, who addressed farmers and agricultural experts during a field tour in Mashonaland West recently, revealed that government is bringing into the country sunflower seed, highlighting that the season is still good for production of sunflower and other small grains.
“Sunflower and cotton are two sources from which we want oil seed. We are importing sunflower seed from South Africa and those prepared for Pfumvudza will get the seed first. We are spending USD200 000 000 annually for importation of cooking oil,” he said.
Government is set to import about 1 700 tonnes of sunflower seed to ensure the initiative takes-off.
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