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Free vines offered to Kapiri farmers

TRYNESS MBALE -Lusaka
ONE thousand farmers are expected to benefit from the sweet potato project by an international agricultural organisation aimed at improving the distribution of vines for orange potato in Kapiri Mposhi.
International Sweet Potatoes (CIP) intends to promote the use of a variety of sweet potato vines in the district.
According to the Zambia National Farmers Union’s (ZNFU) Friday brief recently, the organisation has already started the distribution of free vines to promote diversification.
“CIP, an international agriculture organisation has earmarked 1,000 Kapiri Mposhi farmers to benefit from a project aimed at distributing improved vines for orange sweet potato varieties to farmers,” the statement reads.
CIP has already distributed over five tonnes of vines and will also facilitate market linkages for the produce for farmers.
Commenting on the programme, Kapiri Mposhi District Farmers’ Association chairperson Bwalya Mwansa said, “We welcome the development and as an association. We have linked women and youth farmers to the programme.”
Meanwhile, Mpika has reported that eight cattle have been affected by lumpy skin disease which is an infectious, eruptive, occasionally fatal disease of cattle characterised by nodules on the skin and other parts of the body.
The Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock has since moved to the area to vaccinate some animals to control the disease from spreading to other areas.
Mpika District veterinary officer Wilson Katumbi said the cases have been reported from the Malashi dairy scheme office and that, “The office is well equipped with vaccines to contain the outbreak.”
He called on farmers in the district with livestock to report any suspected cases of the disease to the veterinary office.

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