THE government, in collaboration with the ministry of agriculture and research centres, has expressed commitment in ensuring that the production of sisal increases from one to three tonnes per hectare per year, by embracing modern agricultural practices and technologies.
The government also plans to produce 120,000 tonnes per hectare per year by 2025 to achieve the industrialisation agenda goals.
Tanzania Agricultural Research Institute Mlingano centre ( TARI Mlingano), Tanga Regional Director, Dr Catherine Senkoro, said that the centre produced 1,400,000 tonnes of improved varieties of sisal, and planned to reach 5 million tonnes per hectare per year.
“We as researchers, thank the government through the Prime Minister’s Office for its efforts to revive the production of sisal in the country. Our target is to increase productivity per unit area by developing and producing improved varieties of sisal to achieve the government’s plans as the crop has much potential in the world,” Dr Senkoro said.
Speaking at the ongoing Nanenane Agricultural exhibition at Nyakabindi grounds in Simiyu Region, the director noted that sisal was cultivated in regions that include Tanga, Morogoro, Arusha, Mtwara, Lindi and Dodoma.
According to her, the researchers are continuing to evaluate the type of soil suitable for the production of sisal, and called on Tanzanians to cultivate it in lake zone regions.
“Over 40 per cent of the area in the country is suitable for the production of sisal. We are making efforts in collaboration with the government to ensure that the production of sisal is increased to meet the demands of the nation within the industrialisation agenda context,” Dr Senkoro remarked.
She added that TARI Mlingano has put in place strategies of ensuring farmers applying suitable agricultural practices where they planned to provide training to 500 farmers and 400 extension officers to increase productivity and boost sisal production in the country.
For his part, Tanzania Sisal Board, Marketing Development Officer Mr David Maghali, said that the demands of sisal were higher compared to its production.
He explained that the demand of sisal stands at 500,000 tonnes per year and the production is 40, 000 per year, whereby the government, in collaboration with all sisal stakeholders, planned to increase it, as part of the broader industrial economic status drive.