NATIONAL cotton output is expected to grow by 89 percent from 74 000 tonnes produced last year to 140 000 tonnes in 2018, the Cotton Company of Zimbabwe (Cottco) has said. Without the intervention of government through the Presidential Cotton Input Scheme, cotton production was in free fall, with growers producing 28 000 tonnes during the 2015/2016 agricultural year. “Massive re-engagement and mobilisation meetings by Cottco resulted in farmers accepting the scheme in the 2016/2017 season, pushing the national crop to 74 000 tonnes and 140 000 tonnes in the 2017/2018 season, a growth of 400 percent since inception,” Pious Manamike, Cottco managing director, said. At its peak, the country produced 350 000 tonnes. The Presidential Scheme started in the…