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July 21, 2011

Zimbabwe: US$344 million tobacco sold so far this season

Tobacco worth US$345,2 million has been sold through the auction and contract market at a seasonal average price of US$2,78 per kilogramme.

At day 105 of the tobacco selling season, 125,7 million kg had been sold compared to 107 million kg the same period last season.

The Tobacco Sales Floor, which opened earlier than other auction floors is leading in sales with more than 31,6 million kg.

Boka Tobacco Floors and Millennium Tobacco Floors have recorded sales of 14,7 million kg and 9,5 million kg respectively.

Order has returned at the three auction floors as few farmers continue to deliver their crop for sale.

From the surveys carried out, most farmers no longer have tobacco and it seems this year's projections were exaggerated. A local tobacco expert said the estimates were reached at considering the amount of seed sales and this does not necessarily translate to tobacco planted.

"There is need for the tobacco industry to come up with correct projections as these help stakeholders in planning for the season," she said.

Last season the tobacco output target was revised upwards three times.

Least year more than 120 million kg were sold during the tobacco selling season and this year the industry was expecting 170 million kg of the golden leaf to go under the hammer.

This year is the second time that the country has passed the 100 million kg mark, an indication that the country is regaining its status as one of the world's major tobacco producers.

The Herald

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