A spokesman from the Tobacco Industry and Marketing Board (TIMB) said they had been closed due to “severe congestion at the tobacco auction floors”. He said all new tobacco deliveries to the auction floors had been suspended until further notice.
“Growers should note that the auction floors will not accept any tobacco that has not been booked for the sale in advance and that such tobacco will be turned away from the delivery queues,” he said in an interview.
The move comes amid reports that some wives of tobacco farmers were beginning to sleep outside the TSF waiting to sell their product in Harare. The spokesman said growers were free to book and to deliver on a “first-come first-served” basis to a floor of their choice. “The practice of ‘deliver today and sell tomorrow’ will apply at all auction floors,” he said. “Growers should only engage the services of transporters registered with TIMB and whose payment is done through the Central Stop Order System.”
He said to make bookings, growers could call the auction floor of their choice. Bookings at the TSF are from 6:00 am until 6:00 pm Mondays to Fridays and 6:00 am until 12 noon on Saturdays. Once the third largest producer of flue-cured tobacco, Zimbabwe’s production has dwindled dramatically; courtesy of President Robert Mugabe’s controversial land resettlement programme that began in 2000.Post published in: News