Author Topic: armyworm wreaks havoc in Zimbabwe  (Read 325 times)

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armyworm wreaks havoc in Zimbabwe
« on: March 01, 2017, 04:46:44 PM »
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Zimbabwe’s response to the outbreak of the fall armyworm has been hampered by farmer’s lack of information and pesticides to fight it. This has worsened the food insecurity situation as it targets staple crop-maize.

A report by the Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) warned that a tenth of Zimbabwe’s maize crop is under threat from the fall armyworm. However, most farmers are still not aware of what can be done to reduce it's damage.
Some farmers in Gokwe district bought all kind of theories about a mysterious worm due to lack of information and clear guidance from the government. As a result some healthy looking crops were left at the mercy of the devouring fall armyworm. Many of the farmers are now counting huge losses.

"The fall armyworm visited us end of December last year. It is now better but most of the maize is spoilt. Only a quarter of my hectarage is left un-attacked," Lorcadia Dube from Zhombe district told DW. "We depend on maize for eating but we sell most of it. We have increased hectarage this season after we borrowed inputs from the government," Dube noted.

The inputs from the government came late since the fall armyworm had attacked her field already. Dube will now have to survive on the few grains she planted under a food security program funded by the International Development (DFID) of the Great Britain. The program aims to improve nutrition among small-scale farmers in Zimbabwe.
The Zimbabwe farmers' union said that lack of information on the pests has led to all kind of rumours. "Some are saying if it is a mysterious worm as in the case of the fall armyworm, no pesticides must be used. It will leave the fields on its own," Oppah Hawadi the Chairperson of Zimbabwe Farmers' Union in the Gokwe district said. "If you spray it, the worm will be more vicious on the maize crop and destroy it. That is what they are saying," Hawadi added.



 

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