Choolwe Mwinga

CHOOLWE MWIINGA, A SYMBOL OF HOPE FOR THE YOUNG AND RESILIENT FARM

Mr Choolwe Mwiinga, aged thirty-three is a young resilient farmer in the B- Concession Block, in Mumbwa District in Central Province. He is married with three children, and has his own personal titled farm.

Mr Mwiinga said that some young people of his age group should stop loitering in town aimlessly, saying there is nothing to do, and go back to the farms and start farming. He added that, this time one cannot say they don’t have capital, manpower and other things, and can go into Conservation Farming.

He said that, he was brought up in the village, and finished his education in Grade twelve and decided there and then to venture into farming. All the way he was practicing conventional farming.

He said three years ago the Conservation Farming Unit (CFU) staff visited their farm and started teaching them about Conservation Farming, which he was not able to understand, having been brought up with the conventional farming methods.

However, he said in the first year, he did one hectare of maize and one hectare of soya beans using Conservation Farming. After the harvest he compared the two conventional and conservation farming plots, and discovered that the conservation farming plots fared better.

He said, last year he expanded the number of maize holdings under CF to ten hectares and the number of soya bean plots under CF to nine hectares. He was positively shocked by the huge harvests he realised from those 19 hectares. From the extra sales from those holdings he was able to buy his own tractor and a ripper, and a hammer mill. He said, he also bought a plot in Mumbwa where he is building a house.

He said, Conservation Farming is the only way to go in this modern day of living. He stated, in the area where he is living, there are farmers who are still doing conventional farming, and comparing to his maize in this farming season of 2017/2018, when there was a dry spell, their maize was wilting.

He said, for those people who were doing conservation farming they were not complaining, adding that even if someone visited his farm, it is hard to ascertain if there was really a drought in the area. He re-emphasised that conservation farming is the only way to go.

He further said, ‘when you go into conservation farming, you can use a hoe. Some people say they don’t have animals or a tractor, but even digging holes or basins, you can do wonders, provided you just do it right.’

He said following the right steps and doing it right ensures that the results come out right.

Choolwe Mwiinga in his soya beans field