DODOMA, Tanzania; February 19, 2022 – Farmers in Tanzania were able to sell TSh153 billion (US$66.3 million) worth of produce in structured markets between 2017 and 2021, with combined support from the government, private sector and development partners, according to a new book that was launched today.
The book, titled How Integration Enhances the Competitiveness of Agribusinesses and Smallholder Farming Systems: The Tanzania Case Study, showcases how different organisations, businesses and government agencies worked together in the approach known as the Consortia Model supporting farmers in Southern Highlands, Western Highlands and Northern Highlands of the country. This support included providing funding, strategic support, access to market and financing and linkages to inputs and output markets.
Speaking when he launched the book, Former President of the United Republic of Tanzania H.E. Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete, who is also a Board Member at AGRA (Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa) said: “Over the years, we have learnt that supporting agricultural systems in isolation does not guarantee scale and sustainability. This Consortia Model evolved as we worked with the government, private sector and development partners, building synergies to unlock more value and drive farmers’ adoption of technologies to catalyze sustainable agribusiness relationships and delivery models”.
AGRA has invested US$8.7 million to support consortia working in the four regions. The initiative reached 720,819 farmers, who not only accessed structured markets but also yielded 12% more rice and fetched 47% higher factory gate prices for their higher quality maize. In addition to this, beans export sales increased from US$239,130 to US$19.5 million; with US$13.3 worth of fertilizer sold to participating farmers; and US$16 million worth of seed produced and sold by seed companies and agro-dealers.
“This book provides an opportunity for all the stakeholders to learn from one another and to provide feedback and accountability on the performance of agricultural investments,” said Education Minister Prof Adolf F. Mkenda, who previously held the agriculture docket.
AGRA has been supporting Tanzania’s agriculture sector since 2006 to develop crop varieties, train scientists and research infrastructure, strengthen extension services, provide market, and finance linkages, supporting agro-dealers and policy reforms.
Over the last four years, the integrated approach has proved that synergies between agricultural systems create more value, leading to the adoption of technologies at scale while creating sustainable agribusiness relationships, delivery models, and practices.
The book was produced with support from the government of the United Republic of Tanzania through the Ministry of Agriculture, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Mastercard Foundation, Rockefeller Foundation, IFAD, UK Aid and USAID.
“Our partners under the Partnership for Inclusive Agricultural Transformation in Africa (PIATA) have been the engine behind our integrated delivery model within the agro-economic zones and across value chains. This partnership enabled us to leverage public and private investments to build sustainable systems that will transition agriculture from subsistence into a profitable enterprise,” said Prof. Jean Jacques M. Muhinda, AGRA’s Regional Head for East Africa.
Meanwhile, H.E Kikwete’s week-long tour of agriculture projects supported by AGRA and partners has drawn to a close. The President covered over 3,000 kilometres on the road, traversing seven out of 25 regions of mainland Tanzania, spread across the Southern, Western and Central parts of the country.
Together with the deputy minister of agriculture Anthony Mavude and a cross-section of the public sector, private sector and civil society actors, the former president witnessed first-hand agricultural enterprises that are changing the faces of the rural areas and regional townships.
“Tanzania, with smallholder farmers at the centre, can transcend gains made in agriculture and agro-industrialization into a formidable individual and national development vehicle that will translate into a fast-developing and prosperous nation for the majority of citizens,” H.E Kikwete noted.
Established in 2006, AGRA is an African-led and Africa-based institution that puts smallholder farmers at the center of the continent’s growing economy by transforming agriculture from a solitary struggle to survive into farming as a business that thrives. Together with our partners, we catalyze and sustain an inclusive agricultural transformation to increase incomes and improve food security for 30 million farming households in 11 African countries by 2021.