Govt working on market opportunities for commercial cassava crop

25Nov 2020
The Guardian
Govt working on market opportunities for commercial cassava crop

​​​​​​​THE government is working to implement more measures to enable the country utilise fully cassava market opportunities in various countries including China’s demand which stands at more than 2 million tonnes of dry cassava per year.

In May 2017, Tanzania signed the phytosanitary protocol with people of the United Republic of China, the bilateral business development which apart from green lighted local companies to trade with China; it also opened market access for dry cassava from Tanzania.

Director for crops in the Ministry of Agriculture, NyasebwaChimagu said, serious interventions are afoot to push for general performance of the cassava sub- sector, especially on production and productivity.

He said that the target is to scale- up cassava productivity from current 8 tons to at least 16 tons per hectare through adoption of improved technology

According to him, currently, there are at least six local registered companies legally introduced in China for dry cassava exportation but the country has yet to reap the economic fortunes from the promised market due to some setbacks negating the country's cassava production chain.

“We will continue with efforts to breed more cassava varieties which are pest and disease tolerant, but with high yielding potential. Authorized seed inspectors will effectively also be trained to professionally facilitate production of quality seed,” he explained.

Nyasebwa further said the government through the Tanzania Agriculture Research Institute (TARI), International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) and other technology developers have so far developed agronomic packages such as correct spacing, planting technique, fertiliser rates, weed management, pest and disease management as well as time and harvesting technologies.

“The technologies are being disseminated to farmers through various ways, including Demo plots in major cassava growing areas, SMS, APP packaging with a specific technology and radio programs,” he detailed.

He said China's cassava market is very promising and open to everyone.According to Nyasebwa, as per the set China’s market requirements, the exported products should be free from pests and diseases, free from contaminants such as sand, metal contamination and free from pesticide residues. Read More...