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Botswana expects an increase in supply of citrus fruit by 2024

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The government is optimistic that citrus volumes from local farms will rise significantly by 2024, due to the continued growth in the number of farmers starting citrus production in that country since 2020.

In a recent update on citrus farming, Agricultural Extension Officer Oarabile Letsatsi said that in 2020 and 2021, an increased number of farmers imported citrus seedlings to start production.

“We expect an increase in the supply of citrus fruit by 2024, as the fruit trees grow well in many parts of the country,” said Letsatsi. According to Botswana’s Assistant Minister of Agriculture, Oreeditse Sola Molebatsi, among the projects expected to start production shortly was a multimillion-rand project, which was targeting both local and export markets, including the US and UK.

To add on, Molebatsi said his Ministry was supporting these citrus projects, which included this flagship project developed on a 1 200ha farm near Selibe-Phikwe. He added that the Selibe-Phikwe Citrus project had been developed by South African investors in conjunction with the Botswanan government to boost foreign direct investment and build an export-led economy.

“The project is expected to bring foreign investment to the value of around P500 million [about R655 million],” noted Molebatsi.