Z’bar project gears to uplift small holder spice farmers

29Nov 2021
By Guardian Reporter
Zanzibar
The Guardian
Z’bar project gears to uplift small holder spice farmers

THE stakeholders’ advisory committee for vegetables, fruits and spices—Viungo project in Zanzibar has called for more women and youth to participate in the project which gears to uplift small holder spice farmers from poverty.

Speaking during a visit at the horticultural farms in Unguja, the committee chairperson, Mohamed Khamis Rashid said he was impressed with the project implementation, commending the manager—Amina Ussi Khamis for successful implementation of the project.

The four-year project is implemented in 60 Shehias in both Unguja and Pemba islands and is co-implemented by Community Forest Pemba (CFP); Dar es Salaam based People's Development Forum (PDF) and Tanzania Media Women Association (Tamwa).

“We are impressed with the project implementation; we will conduct regular visits to the farms to encourage small holder farmers to keep up the good work,” said Rashid, urging more women and youth to take part in the second year of the project to improve their welfare.

Project Manager, Amina Ussi Khamis said the tour was organized to get views from the advisory committee on how to further improve it. She said they also wanted the committee members to witness what was going on at the farms and talk to the small holder farmers.

One of the beneficiaries, Kurwa Othman Chande said they have acquired skills on climate-smart horticulture yield and production. She said through the project, she has been able to plant more fruit trees which are sold to customers across the country.

Another farmer, Sheikha Khamis Sheikha said that before the project they were not getting a good profit over lack of markets, but they are now assured of the market and products from their farms and gardens are of high quality.

Sheikha said they are currently selling the products outside Zanzibar including Bagamoyo District in Coast Region.

The Viungo project’s climate-smart curriculum offers a financially viable and incentivizing alternative by positioning farmers to access the growing market for sustainable, high-quality agricultural products — products including vanilla, cinnamon, and other spices.

The project is also working to build bridges between small-scale farmers and external markets.

Through climate-adaptive agriculture techniques and practices, the project improves farming resilience to the effects of climate change while simultaneously strengthening their livelihood, income, and community food security.