Gweru farmer gets global certification
GWERU-based farmer Mr Tatenda Karimazondo has received a Global Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) certification, which qualifies him to export horticulture products to premier destinations abroad.
Global GAP is a common standard for farm management practice created in the late 1990s by several European supermarket chains and their major suppliers and is now the world’s most widely implemented farm certification scheme.
It ensures that food reaches accepted levels of safety and quality, and has been produced sustainably, respecting the health, safety and welfare of workers, the environment, and in consideration of animal welfare issues. Without such reassurance, farmers may be denied access to key markets.
Mr Karimazondo broke into the European market last year, when he started exporting passion fruits as well as peas to the Netherlands after attending the Berlin Fruit Logistica — the biggest horticulture platform for farmers to showcase their products and clinch business deals.
“There is a lot of quality that is required overseas, which is similarly what you get is some of our high end retail outlets here, meaning that you want a fresh product without any blemishes. What is of great importance is that we have managed to secure Global Gap certification, which is one of the certification that’s required to export horticulture products into the European Union,” he said.
“The certification is widely renowned and gives us leverage to export even into the Sadc region. It means there will be less scrutiny on your products if you have the Global GAP certification,” added Mr Karimazondo.
He has already put 35 hectares of peas, which is destined for the export market as well as three hectares under flowers on a trial basis.
He said once the flower trial run is successful, he will be putting 40 hectares under flowers in September.