Tanzania 2018 | AGRICULTURE | COLUMN

TBY talks to Henry J. Semwaza , Director General, Sugar Board of Tanzania, on the sector.

Henry J. Semwaza

How are you combining the latest agricultural technologies and legislative efforts to improve operations in the industry?

First of all, we want to ensure that we have the requisite infrastructure for all the sugarcane manufacturers. We will not rely solely on rain-fed agriculture, but rather expand our irrigation operations. With our government partners, we have been able to produce a pilot irrigation scheme at Msolwa Ujamaa Village in Kilombero with the introduction of irrigation infrastructure, which will be operational a year from now. We will continue introducing other initiatives, like high-end machines, the latest research, harvesting equipment, reduction of waste, and quality control. We are also doubling efforts to engage with small-scale farmers to bring them into a more commercially viable sugar industry. At the moment, we are piloting new legislation. The Sugar Industry Act has been amended to ensure that these smallholder farmers are properly grouped into more transparent, efficient, and business structured organizations. Such a commercial focus will ensure that they obtain the most from their production. Furthermore, through better organization it will be easier to formalize the market and monitor its performance.