THE annual Bulawayo Agricultural Show which ran concurrently with the just ended Zimbabwe International Trade Fair attracted 83 show steers to the fatstock show with this year’s turnover coming to $236 000.
All 83 show steers were sold. Judged by Mr Zeph Dhlamini assisted by Dr Temba Dlodlo, the show sale saw 11 buyers comprising local abattoirs and butcheries and those from Plumtree, Figtree and Victoria Falls who purchased the show steers for an average price of $2 085.
Celebrating their 108th anniversary, C.C Sales, the official auctioneers to the Bulawayo Agricultural Society, said the price represented an average of $5,62 per kg live weight throughout the sale.
The champion steer, a Beefmaster weighing 695kg (two tooth), exhibited and won by Kevin Rae of Azondo Farm, was sold to Dale Saudan of Wholesale Beef for $4 250 at $6,12 per live weight.
Wholesale Beef Butcheries of Bulawayo and Victoria Falls was the biggest volume buyer who purchased 17 steers.
Marcedale Farm won the Best Overall Exhibitor at this year’s show with the runner-up being Kevin Rae of Azondo Beefmaster Cattle Company.
C.C Sales donated $7 100 of the sale proceeds to the Bulawayo Agricultural Society.
The auctioneer was Mr Richard Wakefield of C.C Sales.
The show sale continues to attract a large following comprising business people, farmers and members of the public.
Fatstock judging is done based on a weight- to-age ratio. Judges look for the youngest possible animal at the highest weight with 15 months to two years being a good age.
In the judging of pens, a pen of two for example, the cattle have to be almost identical to win in their various classes.
The Bulawayo Agricultural Society was set up to promote agricultural shows as a teaching and learning platform for all.
It showcases all forms of livestock including cattle, sheep and goats, pigs, poultry and horse, crop produce such as maize, small grains and cereals as well as fruit and vegetables for the communal farmer.
Home Industries incorporating needlework, knitting, crochet, cookery, icing, brewing, home-craft and artwork as well as school projects such as cookery, needlework and home craft for juniors are also included.
The Agricultural Show is an opportunity for farmers to interact and learn from each other.
Zimbabwe has a well-developed and diversified agricultural sector, producing food crops, cash crops, and livestock.
The Government has boosted the agricultural sector by providing electricity in some rural areas through the Rural Electrification Programme and provision of free seed, fertiliser and implements.
It has also seen the promotion of agricultural activities through the Command Agriculture initiative which has yielded much result.
These initiatives have gone a long way in empowering farmers.