Farmers praise YARA after soil health testing education

27Nov 2019
The Guardian
Farmers praise YARA after soil health testing education

FARMERS engaging in rice, maize and onions farming in northern regions of Kilimanjaro, Arusha and Manyara have commended efforts by a fertiliser company—Yara Tanzania for promoting soil health testing, saying it has increased crops yields.

Speaking separately to journalists who visited them to have firsthand information on how they benefitted from using Yara fertilisers and soil health testing, the farmers said the company’s presence has positively affected them economically through increased produce.

“We have highly benefited from the education we got from Yara Tanzania, they have educated us a lot on soil health testing and now the benefits are vivid,” said Jonathan Mjema who has been cultivating paddy for over 20 years.

Mjema said that soil health test enables a farmer to understand a type of a soil and which crop is suitable in that particular area.

“Soil health test helps us (farmers) understand what kind of crop to cultivate in our areas of production, this practice has helped us transform our farming practices from traditional to modern,” he said.

Ikunda Joseph, a farmer who involved in paddy and onions farming asked YARA Tanzania to further its efforts in collaboration with other stakeholders in a bid to help more farmers go modern and embark on agro economy so as to achieve middle income objective set by the government to be achieved by 2025.

“We thank Yara in the way at which they have widened their scope of service in this sector with the objective of improving conditions of farmers, we urge them to work in collaboration with the government and other stakeholders in making sure that they reach out to as many farmers as possible and support them so as they can fully realise the potential of agriculture in transforming their standards of living,” he said.

Aikael Laswai who has been in maize farming for the past 10 years admitted to have benefited from Yara fertilisers and other extension services including health soil testing.

“Our agricultural activities have been simplified ever since we started using farm inputs supplied by Yara, now we can afford costs of living including paying for health services, education for our children and building houses following increase in crop production,” said Laswai.

YARA Tanzania has been working closely with the fifth phase government and other stakeholders in transforming the sector and has a greater impact in the growth and development of sector estimated to employ 80 percent of the population.