M a r k e t N e w s

Tanzania: New Technology Expected to Boost Yields

Posted on : Friday, 5th August 2016

Lindi — The agriculture and seed agency (ASA) has called on farmers across the country to adopt new farming technology so that they can benefit from the practice instead of embracing traditional farming.
The ASA Extension Officer, Mr Johnson Tillya told the 'Daily News' during the ongoing Nanenane exhibitions at Ngongo grounds in Lindi region that many farmers in the country are reluctant to change from traditional farming to modern farming. He said many are still using traditional seeds which give little yields instead of using seeds that have been researched by Naliendele Agricultural Research Institute (NARI) and certified by ASA.
"We are asking farmers in the country to change the attitude and adopt technology in farming, some of them have been reluctant to change but at the end of the day they get little from their farms, they must use seeds that have been researched and approved to be used at the right time," he said.
On fake seeds, Mr Tillya said ASA has been facing a big challenge from people who import or produce fake seeds and sell them to farmers. He said some unfaithful traders pack seeds and put ASA labels but in real sense they sell fake seeds.
"We would like to ask farmers to be careful when buying seeds, some traders are selling fake seeds," he said. According to Mr Tillya, it has been difficult for Tanzanian farmers to sell crops in the international market because of poor grading.
"Since many farmers use uncertified seeds, it has been difficult to get international markets, for example, when you grade rice to get first class, you end up getting a lot of kilograms for second and third class and little for first class, this means there is a big problem," he said.
He added that farmers must be trained to maintain one type of seed for a certain period of time instead of planting various types of seeds at the same time. "A certain region or district must be known for producing a certain type of rice or maize instead of mixing seeds every year. This will boost agriculture production and expand market because traders will be aware of where to get a certain type of crop," he said.
Earlier, ASA Marketing Officer, Ms Jackline Itatiro said the agency has been facing economic difficulties because some traders who buy seeds do not pay on time. She said so far ASA is struggling to recover more than 1.2bn/- from its customers.

She advised farmers to practice farming by taking into consideration the needs of consumers. "Farmers must listen and consider needs of the market, this means they must adopt new technology, new seeds and make sure they produce according to the markets' needs," she said. She also called for adoption of product value chain instead of continuing with the current system of using middlemen in selling agriculture produces. 

Source : allafrica.com
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