Zimbabwe’s agricultural show ends successfully despite pandemic

A family looks at products on offer at the Zimbabwe Agricultural Show in Harare, Zimbabwe, on Oct. 30, 2020. (Xinhua/Tafara Mugwara)

Zimbabwe’s premier agricultural event, the Zimbabwe agricultural show, has ended with farmers and corporations from diverse sectors showcasing their products and services.

The 110th edition of the show, which ran from Oct. 28 to 31, is normally held at the end of August, but this year it was postponed to October owing to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Exhibitions usually take place for a week amidst entertainment from various artists, but due to the pandemic this year the show was not open to the public, and it largely ran as a business exhibition.

Feng Xiaofeng, Managing Director of Satewave Technologies, a firm that provides solar energy and information technology solutions by selling devices from China to individuals and corporations, said the pandemic had a huge impact on the event.

“Compared to previous exhibitions, this year activities have declined by approximately 80 percent, there are very few people. In order to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, authorities limited the number of visitors,” she told Xinhua.

However, despite the low numbers of participants and visitors, some exhibitors who participated at this year’s event were optimistic that they were going to reap tremendous benefits from their participation.

Faith Bhunu, Principal Administrative Officer at the Ministry of Women’s affairs, Community, Small and Medium Enterprises Development, said despite the limit in participants, the ministry still managed to attain its goals.

“We are here as a ministry to promote women’s products and to link them to markets and to new and existing customers by providing exhibition space for women to showcase what they are making and the products that they have for their clients,” she said.

Caroline Godzongere, a local artist who showcased her handmade crafts, said she managed to create business opportunities despite the effects of COVID-19.

“Since it is a business to business agricultural show, I have got a lot of contacts, I have got a lot of networks, and I am hoping my business will grow from this day onwards because of the connections that I got from 2020 agricultural show,” she said.

The Zimbabwe Agricultural Show is the southern African country’s biggest agricultural business exhibition and is attended by local, regional and international exhibitors.

Among this year’s exhibitors were players from different sectors of the economy that include agriculture, manufacturing, the arts, mining, tourism, construction and several others.

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