iPlayer Radio What's New?
Image for Farming Zimbabwe

Listen now 30 mins

Listen in pop-out player

Farming Zimbabwe

30 minutes
First broadcast:
Thursday 01 December 2011

In 2000, President Robert Mugabe introduced "fast-track land reform" to Zimbabwe in a wave of often violent takeovers of mainly white-owned farms.

Led by veterans of the second Chimurenga - the Zimbabwe War of Liberation of the 1960s and 1970s - the takeover was seen internationally as a disaster. It was widely reported that cronyism and corruption meant only the country's politically-connected elite were benefiting from the land reform programme, and in the process were leading Zimbabwe's lucrative agricultural export industry into freefall. But what is the situation a decade on?

Martin Plaut travels across Zimbabwe to investigate new research which suggests that farm production levels are recovering. He meets some of Zimbabwe's new black farmers - some of whom took part in the land seizures - who reveal how land reform has transformed their lives.

He also examines the fortunes of Zimbabwe's remaining white farmers and the black farm workers they employed and asks if country's wider economy has recovered from the massive disruption caused by land reform.

Reporter: Martin Plaut
Producer: Richard Fenton-Smith.


Featured in...

The Best of Crossing Continents

The Best of Crossing Continents

Explore the highlights from the Crossing Continents archive


  1. Image for Crossing Continents

    Crossing Continents

    On the ground reporting from around the world which focuses on the human dimension of the big…

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Added. Check out your playlist Dismiss