GUTU — Several villagers in Gutu have diversified from crop production to pig farming because they have been experiencing poor harvests over the past few years due to perennial droughts.
BY JAIROS SAUNYAMA
Piggery, which is done at a small-scale, has become a source of livelihood for some households in Mukaro, Chamisa, Munemo and Utsinda, among others.
The villagers said they kept small numbers of pigs — usually between five and 20 — to minimise the cost of feeding the animals.
Pig farming, said the villagers, became popular in the community after a few farmers succeeded in their projects, enticing more people into the business.
“There were two farmers in Mukaro village that did quite well through pig production and this is where most of us got the idea,” said Muchadei Nhema of Mukaro Village.
“No one donated the pigs here, but we bought them from local farmers and started rearing the animals on our own.
Paul Mutsindiri from Munemo Village said he had been in the piggery business for the past five years and has been able to look after his family.
“It has proved to be helpful as I am able to fend for my family,” said Munemo.
“Pigs require a lot of attention like feeding and washing them, but all in all, many people in this village have mastered the art of keeping pigs.”
Most of the villagers just keep the bow and sow, selling the piglets once they reach maturity and breeding again.
He said the piglets fetched as much as US$30 each.
While most villagers sell the pigs to butcheries at Gutu business centre, others travel to as far as Masvingo town, where they fetch better prices.
A pig sells at an average of US$300.
“We sell the pigs to our local butcheries and ordinary people who will be having big events,” said
James Mbwera, who only has five pigs said, “Some sell their pigs to teachers at local schools while others travel to Masvingo where they get good money as compared to local markets.”