The government has entered into an agreement with the German International Cooperation Agency (GIZ) to improve rice farming on the value chain.
The agreement was signed yesterday between the Permanent Secretary Ministry of Agriculture Gerald Kusaya and GIZ Tanzania Resident Director Dr. Mike Falke in Dodoma and witnessed by the management of the ministry as well as the Kilimo Trust who will implement the project.
Kusaya stated that the agreement would improve rice cultivation in the value chain by boosting production, processing and access to reliable rice markets.
“We will work with GIZ to have enough rice in the country where the emphasis is on increasing the value of rice so that we will have the best rice that will meet the needs of the domestic and foreign markets” stressed Kusaya.
The secretary general of agriculture added that the fifth phase government has issued directives to the ministry to ensure the country has food security so as to stop relying on imported food.
Kusaya also noted that the agreement is based on enabling the farmer to produce rice in quantity and quality and to enable the industry to get raw materials for processing rice which will increase employment and income security for the farmer and the nation.
“President Dr. John Pombe Magufuli intends to create 8 million jobs so through the rice ministry the ministry in collaboration with GIZ and Kilimo Trust are focused on increasing productivity and helping farmers find reliable markets ”elaborated Kusaya.
For her part, Mary Shetto, Director of the Agriculture Trust that will implement the agreement, said the project aims to increase the productivity and production of rice crops by training farmers, markets, loans and inputs.
Shetto added that the Kilimo Trust is implementing a project to increase the competitiveness of the rice crop (ie CARI) since 2014 where the second phase started in 2018 and a total of 44,000 farmers have benefited from the first phase.
“The project has successfully reached 44,000 farmers in the first phase and 36,000 farmers in the second phase will be connected to reliable markets through rice processors in eight regions,” Chetto said.
Shetto mentioned the regions of Mbeya, Songwe, Shinyanga, Tabora, Singida, Pwani, Morogoro and Iringa are implementing this project to increase the competitiveness of the rice crop where the emphasis is on producing better rice and recycling to find reliable rice markets.
According to the National Rice Development Strategy Phase II (NRDS II), the Ministry of Agriculture and stakeholders aim to increase rice production from 2,219,628 tonnes by 2018 to 4,500,000 tonnes by year 2030.