23 May 2019

Africa: It Is Time for Africa to Feed the World, Says Sagcot Boss

Dar es Salaam — The Southern Agricultural Growth Corridor of Tanzania (Sagcot) chief executive officer, Mr Geoffrey Kirenga on Thursday night said African countries should start feeding the world instead of the world feeding the continent.

Mr Kirenga made the statement during the Mwananchi Thought Leadership Forum (MTLF) that was under the theme; Agriculture Our Lifeline.

Speaking during the fourth event organized by Mwananchi Communications Limited (MCL), in collaboration with ITV/Radio one, Mr Kirenga said the continent has the best uncultivated land arable across the world.

"About 60 per cent of this land is found in Africa, 50 per cent of it in Tanzania, Zambia and Mozambique. Therefore, Tanzania has role to feed the continent with the task falling to the Southern Highlands, Lake Zones, northern and the Coast areas where everything can be grown," he said.

He said only 25 per cent of agricultural production efficiency is being realized in the county because of the use of poor technology, noting that a farmer producing two tonnes of maize per hector annually can raise production to 5 tonnes per hector with middle scale farmers reaching up to 11 tonnes.

"The same can happen to potatoes where a farmer producing 8 tonnes per hactor can raise production to 20 tonnes and over 40 tonnes per hector," he said.

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According to him, the country needed best seed policies to improve provision of better seeds to farmers, noting that climate smart agriculture requiring addition of manure and plants remains to the land was crucial.

"We also require predictable marketing policies to ensure the country builds an industrial economy as emphasized by the fifth phase government" he said.

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