TANZANIA – The Ministry of Agriculture has announced a significant investment of 41.39 billion Tanzanian Shillings (US$15.9M) in the 2024/25 budget to bolster the seeds research and production sector.

Among the specific initiatives funded by this budget is the construction of an ultramodern Gen Bank at the Tanzania Agricultural Research Institute (TARI)’s Selian Centre in Arusha.

Additionally, an advanced bioscience lab will be installed at TARI Mikocheni Centre in Dar es Salaam, further bolstering seed research capabilities.

Hussein Bashe, Minister for Agriculture, shared the details of this strategic funding while speaking to Members of Parliament on May 24.

Highlighting the crucial role of seed research in the nation’s agricultural and economic growth, Minister Bashe emphasized that agriculture remains the backbone of Tanzania’s economy.

Minister Bashe, in his strategic vision, has underscored the importance of enhancing seed research. This vision is a key driver in the ministry’s goal of having the agriculture sector contribute at least 20% to the national GDP, a goal that this investment is poised to help achieve.

The allocated budget will support other initiatives, aimed at improving crop production and productivity.

Further investments include sponsoring 485 agricultural experts to pursue higher education in seed research and rehabilitating the TARI Tengeru Centre in Arusha to make it a leading hub for horticultural research.

The ministry also plans to produce and distribute 5.7 million cassava seedlings across regions where the crop thrives and install irrigation infrastructure on 1,120 hectares of research farms.

Minister Bashe detailed additional projects, such as the completion of a facility for producing banana tree seeds through tissue culture technology at TARI Maruku Centre in Kagera and constructing modern irrigation schemes at the Agricultural Seeds Agency (ASA) estates, which span 1,375 hectares.

The ministry will also establish new irrigation farms covering 8,000 acres and procure two seed processing facilities with a capacity of 4 tonnes per hour for the Mbozi and Namtumbo seed estates.

“These robust six targets, spanning from 2025 to 2050, aim to improve crop production and productivity through 27 distinct strategies,” said Minister Bashe.

He reiterated the ministry’s commitment to ensuring the agriculture sector contributes 100% to national food security and increases the value of crop exports to US$3 billion.

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