-edible oil production in the country.
The step is the outcome of strategies laid down by Uvinza District leaders in mobilizing oil palm farming by government and private institutions after allocating areas for the purpose.
Presenting his report to the Board Chairman of Tanzania Agricultural Research Institute (TARI) Dr Yohana Budeba who visited the District to inspect implementation of the Prime Minister’s directives, Uvinza District Agricultural Officer Masolwe Salum said the response is a result of TARI in collaboration with the District Council in preparing seed beds for the oil palm crop for free distribution.
Eng Masolwe said the move by TARI to produce modern Tenera oil palm seeds for free distribution has spurred many people to opt for oil palm growing which has also increased the crop’s acreage from 8,023 hectares to 32,462 hectares at present.
On his part the Uvinza District Agricultural Education Officer Shingwa Hamisi said after the Prime Minister’s directives they visited all schools in the 16 wards of the District and mobilized the crop’s cultivation and some of the schools have started preparing seed beds for seed production.
TARI Director General Dr Geoffrey Mkamilo said Uvinza District is leading in responding to the Prime Minister’s call and they will provide it with 22,000 more Tenera seedlings in a short time following request for more seedlings.
He added the strategy is to reach one million seedlings so that every area that is fit to grow the crop should be planted with the same.
He said TARI, which plans to produce five million Tenera seedlings will also provide free training to extension officers and individual farmers for the crop’s better farming methods.
TARI Board Chairman Dr Budeba said as of now they have decided to take researches down to lowest levels in regard to the farming issues including primary schools so as to modernize oil palm farming.
He said already he has already directed TARI researchers to produce enough Tenera oil palm seeds for free distribution to farmers who will be able to produce up to five tons of palm oil per hectare compared to old seeds that produce only 1.6 tons of the oil per hectare.