Zimbabwe has favourable climatic conditions conducive for the production of a variety of fruits, flowers and vegetables for export to the EU market, notes the facilitator of a recent SADC TRF, EU funded, Global GAP Certification training workshop in Gweru, Midlands Province, Zimbabwe.
Speaking to the AgriSeason, Consultant – Food Safety Management Systems, Mrs. Yvonne Dzuda, said that, “There is a knowledge gap on regulations which ensure that all the horticultural crops exported from Zimbabwe meet the EU requirements with regards to Maximum Residue Levels (MRLs) and certification to standards such as Global GAP.
This program aims to train farmers, extension officers and plant health inspectors in Global GAP and IPM.”
Mrs. Dzuda said that, “First step would be to attend a training session on Global GAP so that the producer understands the requirements of the standard. The producer can also download the standard for free from their website www.globalgap.org”
She added that, “A gap analysis can show the producer what they need to put in place in order to meet the requirements of the standards. When the producer is ready for an audit, they can register and an audit can be booked with a Certifying Body (CB) of their choice. The CB will advise on audit costs and availability of an auditor and the audit process.”
The Global GAP certification is very important for farmers and players in the food export sector to get and Mrs. Dzuda said that, ” When a producer is certified to an internationally recognized scheme such as Global GAP, the producer is saying to the world that they are committed to following Good Agricultural Practices and ensuring the production of a safe product to the consumer. This opens many doors to the market as the market requires good quality safe produce that is produced in an environmental sustainable manner.
More work needs to be done in getting information out there on requirements for export. This program has been very well received by farmers in Zimbabwe.For More Information please contact:
Consultant – Food Safety Management Systems
+263 773 435 370 or +263 712 620 753