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  • Tanzania: Modern Cashew Nut Seedlings Inspire Singida Farmers 01/06/2021

    Jan 6th, 2021

    CASHEWNUT farmers in Singida Region and neighbouring areas may now have a reason to smile following an ongoing project to produce a well-researched and modern cashew nut seedlings with high yields. This follows an initiative by the National Service (JKT) in collaboration with the Tanzania Agricultural Research Institute (TARI) to support the farmers. Equally, farmers who wish to have cashew nut farms may visit the National Service's Greenhouse farm which has so far raised 3,000 seedlings, according to the head of 834 Dodoma's Makutupora National Service Camp, Lieutenant Colonel Festo Mbanga. "We were approached by the Singida Regional Commissioner, Dr. Rehema Nchimbi requesting that we put up the green house that would supply seedlings to help farmers and produce the best cashewnut quality in the country... and last year, we spent about 80m/- for preparation of the project," he said. Speaking yesterday at Mkiwa village in Manyoni District, Singida Region where the army has put up the state-of-the art greenhouse for the crop, Lt Col Mbanga said the decision was also reached after realizing that Singida is one of the 16 regions, whose land favours cashew nut cultivation. According to him, the project was being undertaken in collaboration with 843 National Service camp in Nachingwea district in Lindi Region after obtaining the best seedlings, believed to produce the best cashew products after a research that was conducted by TARI at its Naliendele Centre. According to Lt Col Magalu Malecela, who is the Head of the National Service's Nachingwea Camp, in 2016, TARI in collaboration with the Cashew nut Board of Tanzania (CBT) made considerable efforts to develop over 50 improved cashew nut varieties alongside improved production cashew technologies aimed at increasing the crop production in the country. However, he urged farmers to use improved cashew nut varieties developed by the institute to increase their yields and favorably compete in the international market. Production of the seedlings, currently being sold to farmers in the Central Zone Region at 1,000/- per variety is in line with the government's targets to raise at least one million tonnes by 2025. According to Lt Col Malecela, who was speaking in an event to inaugurate selling of the seedlings yesterday, the new project would help to boost the country's economy by selling best quality cashew nut seedlings. "In 2016 we started with 100,000 tonnes and in 2017 the number of tonnes of cashew nuts increased to 290,000, while in 2018 we produced 2 00,000 tonnes," he said adding that in 2020, about 300,000 tonnes were produced in collaboration with Makutupora Centre at the Manyoni farm. Yesterday, one of the farmers, Mr Maulid Selemani who owns 3,000 hectares of land visited the Manyoni Centre to buy about 200 varieties of seedlings and exuded confidence, saying that initially he had a challenge in acquiring them, but he can now visit the centre and access the seedlings easily.