A total of $356,5 million has been earned through the sale of 129,9 million kilogrammes of tobacco, 120 days into the tobacco selling season, the Tobacco Industry and Marketing Board (TIMB) said.
The tobacco selling season is expected to close on Thursday this week.
However, the country has failed to meet its projected output of 170-200 million kilogrammes of tobacco this year.
The total value for the 120 days in the selling season shows a 4, 54% increase in sales from $341 million during the same period last year.
While an increase of 11,10% has been registered to 129,9 million kilogrammes from 116,9 million kilogrammes during the same period last year.
According to TIMB, a kilogramme of tobacco has been sold at $2,75 compared to $2,92 per kilogramme last year same period.
A total of 1 673 674 bales were laid while 1 556 481 bales were sold during the period under review.
Finance minister Tendai Biti, in his mid-term fiscal policy review last month, said the agriculture sector was still poised to register 19,3% growth due to support by government and other cooperating partners by providing inputs timely through the open market, contract farming arrangements as well as farmers’ resources.
For the period 2009/2010 a 44% change was registered for tobacco output to 2010/2011, 177 792 tonnes from 123 400 tonnes.
TIMB is in the process of looking for a buyer for burley tobacco which is for the local market.
Burley farmers are yet to get buyers for their tobacco as they are facing stiff competition from Malawi that has produced the crop and is selling it at low prices compared to their counterparts here.
Boka Tobacco Auction Floor is sourcing out money to buy burley tobacco and pack it for resell. Burley tobacco is used for producing cigarettes.