Farmers hail Zim, EU poultry project

03 Dec, 2021 - 00:12 0 Views
Farmers hail Zim, EU poultry project

The Herald

Freedom Mupanedemo-Midlands Bureau

POULTRY farmers in Kwekwe yesterday hailed Government for launching an Inclusive Poultry Value Chain (IPVC) project designed to benefit the local community.

The IPVC project is part of the European Union-funded Zimbabwe Agricultural Growth Programme (ZAGP), a partnership between the Government and the EU.

It is meant to tackle Zimbabwe’s livestock challenges through financial support from the EU, amounting to e40 million, with the IPVC getting e6 million.

Speaking after the launch of the project in Mbizo, Kwekwe yesterday, Deputy Minister of Lands, Agriculture, Fisheries, Water and Rural Development, Vangelis Haritatos, said the project was set to benefit smallholder farmers, mostly women.

Deputy Minister Haritatos

“I am glad that the IPVC programme is also benefiting the marginalised smallholder farmers, of which most of the beneficiaries are women. Statistics from the Zimbabwe Poultry Association indicated that two thirds of all broiler meat is produced by small and medium scale farmers,” he said.

The similar trend is also noted in the egg production where independent small and medium producers contribute 60 percent of the production whilst they cater for 100 percent free range chickens in the market.

Added Deputy Minister Haritatos: “Notably, women constitute the bulk of the poultry produce, with figures indicating that over 60 percent of the producers in poultry are women. 

“As we are currently commemorating the 16 days of activism against gender-based violence, this investment targeting smallholder poultry producers has affected or directly empowered the women folk and improved their economic resilience.” 

Deputy Minister Haritatos said the transformational Vision 2030 of achieving a prosperous and empowered upper middle income society by 2030 was all inclusive with everyone expected to play part.

He said the IPVC project, among other goals, seeks to improve the productivity, profitability and sustainability of small and medium producers in the poultry value chain, of which enhancing market access is one of the key strategies to achieve these set goals.

IPVC team leader, Mr Joseph Matiza, said the project had since assisted over 5 000 small to medium-scale poultry farmers in the last 13 months, through access to affordable chicks and feed to the tune of US$1,3 million.

Mr Matiza said the poultry project had six targets.

“The IPVC is meant to establish functional poultry business centres like the one we are witnessing today, reduce poultry production costs, improve poultry productivity, value addition business development services, awakening poultry value chains and promoting a green technology amongst others,” he said.

The Kwekwe Poultry Project Centre’s 2 300 square metre piece of land was provided by council.

Besides the open market shed and the butchery services, the project is helping producers to establish direct formal market linkages between producers and bulk takers of poultry products such as schools and                            colleges.

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