Nyore Madzianike Senior Reporter
THE Command Agriculture programme, which was rolled out by the Cabinet Committee on Food Security and Nutrition three years ago, has proved a success by meeting or surpassing the purpose and expectations of its establishment.
The scheme has yielded downstream benefits which have seen the country attaining its food security objective which resultantly put an end to grain imports.
Apart from ensuring food self-sufficiency, the initiative has also transformed the livelihood and living standards of both small-scale and commercial through its rich pickings.
Over the years, Command Agriculture has managed brought together private and the public sector players to undertake various roles under its armpit.
In Manicaland, the scheme has benefitted thousands farmers and households and added another feather on its growing cap by scooping the overall best stand at the just ended Manicaland Agricultural and Society held in Mutare.
The command agriculture stand, through its displays and aggregation shrugged off competition from nearly 400 other exhibitors.
The programme’s provincial coordinator and Agritex head Mrs Phillipa Rwambiwa said they displayed and packaged their products and services in line with the exhibition’s theme: “Economic growth through collaborative efforts”.
“The display, presentations and linkages between various departments, that is, the private sector, Government and the farmers themselves was in line with the theme. I do not think any other stand would have matched the standard we had set,” she said.
Mrs Rwambiwa said command agriculture had displays on tillage equipment, combine harvestors and various mechanisation equipment and machinery.
They also had a theme desk showcasing the backward and forward linkages of players in the command agriculture chain.
“We are saying in terms of matching the theme, were the best because we managed to bring a lot of actors into command agriculture to collaborate towards economic growth. As you can see a number of products come from command agriculture and we had a theme desk which explained and itemised how command agriculture operates, from the bank to the agro-manufacturing company. In-between we had Government departments and private companies that also provide services to the farmers under command agriculture,” she said.
Mrs Rwambiwa said their stand also attracted a lot of attention from school children who gleaned information on various issues relating to the new curriculum.