Zimbabwe’s horticulture exports to improve

A horticulture expert with the Europe Africa Caribbean Pacific Liaison Committee (COLEACP) says Zimbabwe has significant horticulture export potential and can surpass Kenyan production with careful planning and coordination.

The horticulture sector is gearing up to improve exports with assistance of COLEACP which entered into a partnership with a local trade promotion body Zimtrade in 2016.

Speaking on the sidelines of a training workshop for various stakeholders in horticulture, Kenyan horticulture expert Maina Karuiru said Kenya achieved a $5 billion export industry for horticulture, tea and coffee by taking time to understand consumer demands, European market requirements and empowering small holder farmers and Zimbabwe has the capacity to surpass this owing to a much better crop production climate.

“Zimbabwe climate is not similar to Kenya, it is much better,” said Karuiru.

Zimtrade Client Manager Mr Richard Saizi said through collaboration with farmers, government agencies and exporters, Zimbabwe can improve market access, facilitate access to finance and tap technical assistance.

Zimbabwe’s horticultural exports reached a peak in the 1999/2000 season with exports worth $143 million but the country’s top agriculture foreign currency earner tobacco, is an indicator the industry can easily fetch more than $1 billion in earnings.