According to Zimbabwe's Agricultural Marketing Authority (AMA), the nation has been flooded by smuggled tomatoes, which threatens to push local farmers out of business. These tomatoes are being shipped in from countries such as Zambia. This was confirmed on Thursday by vegetable traders at fresh produce markets across Harare, who said there were more tomatoes from Zambia than locally produced ones.
"There is no justification for Zimbabwe to import tomatoes from its northern neighbor given that the country is endowed with good soils and climatic conditions suitable for tomato growing," AMA said on its website. "Someone vented his frustrations on social media after buying four tomatoes for US$1 from a vegetable vendor in a leafy Harare suburb. The vendor justifies her prices, saying the tomatoes were imports from Zambia."
The agency said it was important for Zimbabwe to accelerate its import substitution drive to save foreign currency spent on the importation of produce like tomatoes.