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    Thursday, 10 March 2016

    Chiredzi farmer expects 528 metric tonnes winter maize




    Morris Bishi
    Chiredzi Bureau

    Chiredzi
    – A prominent Chiredzi sugarcane farmer has tried maize this time around and he does not regret the move as he is expecting 528 metric tonnes of the crop.
    Tungamirai Rukatya (31) who is a medical doctor by profession has grown 44 hectares of maize at his Chiredzi South Ranch and is expecting to harvest 528 metric tonnes of maize. He said this was his first time to grow maize in response to calls by made by Deputy Minister of Agriculture Davis Marapira for sugarcane farmers to help in providing food security to the nation.
    Besides the 44hectares of maize, Rukatya has 102 hectares which is under sugarcane on his 5000hectare farm and he employs 41 people with 310 cattle and 542 sheep on the farm.
    "This is my first time on this farm to grow maize. I was inspired by the call by Minister Marapira on sugarcane farmers to grow maize inorder to help in food security when he once visited my farm last year. I am expecting to harvest a minimum of 12 tonnes per hectare thereby harvesting over 528 metric tonnes and that will go a long way in averting hunger in the Lowveld.
    "I am a sugarcane farmer as you can see and the biggest area is under sugarcane but I decided to venture into maize. We have more heat here in the Lowveld which is suitable for irrigation and water is always available and during these heat period crops do well," said Rukatya.
    Rukatya said being a medical doctor is a talent and farming needs passion. He urged farmers to travel widely in-order to get ideas from others.local news

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