By Trevor Makonyonga
Government is set to introduce a Rural Presidential Horticulture Plan in the 2021-2022 season.
Speaking at a post cabinet briefing, Tuesday, Information minister, Monica Mutsvangwa said fruit trees will be a priority in the plan.
“The plan will target priority fruit trees, namely: passion fruit (Granadilla), pecan nuts, apple, guava, mango, lemon, avocado pears and macadamia. Each targeted household will be given 10 trees of each fruit variety, depending on suitability of the fruit tree to the agro-ecological regions and potential income to be generated. The first phase running to December 2021 has a target of 500 000 seedlings. In addition, a total of 35 000 gardens will be established, and each will be equipped with a solar borehole, cattle water trough and an ablution facility. Each garden will cater for a village, school or youth ward centre.”
The government has also laid a plan for rural poultry production.
Mutsvangwa added, “The nation is further advised that the Government will introduce a Presidential Rural Poultry Pass-on Scheme, which seeks to commercialise rural poultry production, thereby providing an affordable source of protein and increasing rural household incomes. The Scheme intends to distribute rural poultry chicks to at least 1.8 million rural households over a period of 5 years. The Goats Pass-On Scheme will see a total of 600 000 does and 40 000 bucks being equitably distributed to 600 000 households in all the country’s 8 rural provinces in 2021. The programme will result in 1.8 million rural households benefiting by 2023. The other programmes to be introduced include the Silage and Pasture Production for Enhanced Milk Production, Veterinary Public Health Programme, in order to improve quality and quantity of livestock as well as improve milk production.”
There is also a Fisheries and Aquaculture Growth Plan in which the government will develop 60 fish ponds at irrigation schemes in the country’s districts, while 6 cage projects will be established at the Muchekeranwa, Osborne, Mutirikwi, Nerutanga, Marovanyati and Chivhu dams.
“The benefits of these programmes and projects will accrue directly to the individual households, thereby raising their standards of living.”