Wimbainashe Zhakata Mutare Correspondent
DAIRY farmers in Manicaland have been urged to grow and stash their own stockfeed to counter increasing prices of commercial stockfeed.
In an interview, Zimbabwe Farmers’ Union (ZFU) provincial manager Mr Daniel Mungazi said farmers should learn to grow livestock feed.
“It is now high time our farmers to go for home-grown feed in order to reduce the production costs.
“There is need to conduct trainings on the establishment of fodder crops which are also effective on feeding livestock,” said Mr Mungazi.
He urged farmers to engage in farming activities that create business for them as well as increasing stockfeed.
“Farmers also need to embrace an integrated farming approach where a farm set- up needs to have a number of enterprises that complement each other in terms of inputs supply.
“Crop residues can be used to make livestock feed while animal manure supply provides nutrients to crops,” added Mr Mungazi.
Recently, dairy farmers expressed concern over the high prices of stockfeed during the sixth annual general meeting (AGM) of the Zimbabwe Association of Dairy Farmers held in Nyanga recently.
Addressing dairy farmers during the AGM, Minister of Lands, Agriculture, Water, Climate and Rural Settlement Retired Air Marshal Perrance Shiri said the Commercial Farmers’ Union (CFU) was working on securing funding for dairy farmers in dry parts of the country to access free stockfeed.
“I know about the members from CFU who were negotiating with the intention of securing some funding which is going to be used to buy equipment for harvesting hay in dry parts of the country.
“They are targeting delivering that hay to Matabeleland and Masvingo provinces for free. I am not sure how far the negotiations have gone but I am very much aware that there are such negotiations taking place,” said Minister Shiri.