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Zimbabwe - Agricultural Value Chain Development Programme (AVCP) – ESMP Summary


Zimbabwe is an agrarian country, with over 80% of the population depending on agriculture for their livelihoods and over 70% of the population living in rural areas and majority of thembeing women. The sector produces various commodities which contribute to agricultural GDP as follows: maize 14%, tobacco 25%, cotton 12.5%, sugar and horticulture 7%, beef and fish 10%, at least 24% is devoted to the rest of livestock (cattle, sheep, goats, pigs, poultry and ostrich etc.), 0.5% is accounted by subsistence crops. Of these commodities, tobacco, cotton, sugar, horticulture, tea, and bananas accounts for most exports. There are two sets of production systems in Zimbabwe namely: the communal farming system and commercial system. The major hubs for production of fruits and vegetables in Zimbabwe are Mondera, Masvingo, Gweru, Chipinge, Chimanimani Honde valley, Kariba, Shamva, Cashel valley, Chegutu, Harare and Beitbridge. Citrus production in Zimbabwe is carried out traditionally in the cooler highland areas of Mazowe Valley in northern Zimbabwe and the hotter, drier, lower lying areas of the BeitBridge District in the south of the country (Manzungu 2012). Cattle production is majorly in Bulawayo, Marondera, Masvingo, Chinhoyi and Kadoma (Tavirimirwa et al, 2013). Agriculture which was the main anchor of Zimbabwe economy is now a shadow of its past with productivity from crop and livestock husbandry dropping very low. The major beef conglomerate called Cold Storage Company (CSC) which was pivotal to the dominance of Zimbabwe in the beef subsector in the past, functions today atless than 10% capacity utilization level.

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