Potato Production Facing Challenges
LILONGWE: Experts say potato production in most African countries is being marred by multiple hiccups emanating from many interlocked challenges.
Professor of Horticulture at Bunda College Moses Kwapata says the use of unimproved and uncertified seed is one of such challenges.
“For instance in Malawi farmers mix potatoes of different variety in one field, which is not good,” said Professor Kwapata.
Professor Kwapata said such challenges are forcing farmers to produce just a minimum of seven tonnes against production capacity of 40 tonnes per hector.
However, Professor Kwapata said some of these challenges will be a thing of the past as Bunda has embarked on seed cleaning exercise.
Such improved potatoes will be ready for the farmers to plant in the next two years, according to Professor Kwapata.
Professor Kwapata made this revelation during a four day workshop that has drawn experts in the field of potato from Malawi, South Africa, Eritrea and Zimbabwe.
The workshop was held in Lilongwe Malawi’s capital city with an intention to devise means of improving potato production in the four countries.
On his part Malawi’s Deputy Minister of Local Government and Rural Development Mr. Augustine Mtendere said potato farming has potential to end hunger and alleviate poverty among Malawians as the crop withstands harsh conditions of climate change.—Zodiak Online
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