Dar es Salaam. Agriculture stakeholders have urged the government to invest in small scale farmers to ensure food security as well as surplus for export.
They say this can be done by providing them with capital and reliable markets.
Speaking during a two day meeting, traders, owners of processing plants and other stakeholders were in agreement that the country has an abundant fertile land, but farmers have lacked capital and market assurance.
Mr Salumu Ismail, a secretary general of Cassava Farmers Association want the government to provide small scale farmers with incentives that will motivate them to increase productivity.
He also urged small scale farmers to form groups that would make it easy for them to get support from the government and other stakeholders.
Mr Charles Steven, a trader from Rukwa, called on the government to regulate food crops’ prices to ensure farmers benefit and production is increased. He urged the government to control export of raw food crops instead of processed ones.
“By exporting processed food crops the government will be creating employment opportunities to many ordinary Tanzanians,” said Mr Steven.
Mr Ramadhani Selemani, a farmer form Kigoma asked the government to use country’s foreign missions to look for the market.
Responding to the concerns, agriculture minister Japhet Hasunga and the deputy minister for Land, Housing and Human Settlement Development, Ms Angelina Mabula said the government will work on the farmers’ recommendations.