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Zambia: With drought threatening food security, farmers turn to drip irrigation

With the recent drought in Southern Africa compounding the unpredictable impact of climate change on food production, local farmers are converting to drip irrigation in an attempt to conserve water, using less to produce more, according to Crookes Brother’s Limited (CBL) MD Guy Clarke.

During a tour of CBL’s Mawecro and Mthayiza farms, in Mpumalanga, on Friday, Clarke described drip irrigation as a form of irrigation that saves water and fertiliser by allowing water to drip slowly to the roots of many different plants, either onto the soil surface or directly onto the root zone, through a network of valves, pipes, tubing and emitters.

Clarke told Engineering News Online that drip irrigation gives better yields, uses only 70% of the water usually for irrigation purposes and uses less electricity.

“We need to intensify agriculture to get better yields with less water,” he said.


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