ACCORDING to Tanzania Agricultural Research Institute (TARI), Tanzania should use various technologies that provide positive response to the challenges facing communities, in her efforts to achieve middle and industrial economy by 2025.
TARI is engaged in the distribution of technologies for the aim of reaching farmers and other agricultural stakeholders.
TARI General Director, Dr Geoffrey Mkamilo says the institution was established by parliamentary law number 10 of 2016, responsible for researching, managing and promoting the use of various technologies for farmers and other stakeholders including coordinating all research activities in Tanzania Mainland.
Dr Mkamilo says the institution has three main departments namely; research and innovation, technological distribution together with administration and human resources.
“All research activities are carried out by the research and innovation department,” Dr Mkamilo told the Daily news.
According to Dr Mkamilo the department of technological distribution and relationship is responsible for ensuring that all technologies, innovations and best agricultural practices in all strategic products are distributed to farmers and other stakeholders in the value chain.
“The department is also responsible for strengthens cooperation with local, regional or international partners in the value chain,” he added. On the other hand, the General Director said, the current research centres in the country are about 18 where every research centre manages and conducts research and dissemination of technology.
Dr Mkamilo begins by describing the TARI Kibaha research Institute that deals with research and development of sugar cane products. “The demand of sugar is about five thousand tonnes per year but production is only three thousand tonnes per year.
Our researchers have come up with technologies to contribute and increase productivity in sugar production and various agricultural methods,” he explained. He said that another institute is the TARI Mikocheni .
The institute deals with the research of two crops and the second area is biotechnology research. Dr Mkamilo explained that TARI Mlingano in Tanga region as another research institute dealing with research of two crops including sisal and soil research and fertilizer use.
“There is also a large laboratory used for testing soil throughout the country in order to make recommendations to farmers before planting their different crops,” he remarked.
Another institution is TARI Ifakara and Dakawa-Mvomero in Morogoro region that are collaborating in conducting research on rice. Another institute according to Dr Mkamilo is TARI Ilonga based in Morogoro region.
The institute is dealing with the research of various crops including maize, millet, sorghum, aloe and sunflower. Also the institute is conducting crop research after harvest. He added that the TARI Makutupora research institute in Dodoma is conducting re- TARI has solutions to agricultural challenges search on grapes.
Tengeru in Arusha region conducts vegetable research, ingredients where all fruits are in the value chain. He also explains on the TARI Selian centre in Arusha which is researching on wheat, barley and maize in partnership with Ilonga .The Arusha centre also collaborates with TARI Uyole research institute in Mbeya region in researching beans.
“TARI Uyole in Mbeya region conducts maize research, beans, rounded potatoes, pyrethrum and agricultural tools in collaboration with Ilonga institute.
They create technologies that respond to the challenges faced by farmers,” he elaborated. He urges the public to cooperate with these agricultural research institutes including TARI Naliendele in Mtwara region which conducts research in oil seeds especially nuts and sesame, but also cashew research.
Banana research is conducted by the TARI Maruku research Institute in Kagera region which has been raising awareness among farmers on dealing with banana pests and diseases.
In addition, TARI Ukiliguru in Mwanza is researching root crops including cassava, sweet potatoes, yams and cotton research. Another is the TARI Tumbi research Institute in Tabora region.
The centre has been dealing with research of forestry agricultural in which a farmer can plant oranges and trees in the same farm or a farmer planted maize on a tree farm.
Apart from that, Through Kihinga Institute located at Kigoma region, TARI has conducted research on palm with the aim of getting cooking oil and producing soap known as mise.
He was speaking on droughts resistant crops such as sorghum, finger millet grain and millet which was done by TARI Hombolo research centre in Dodoma region.
The research of rounded potatoes, maize and beans is being researched at the TARI Kifyulilo research institute of Mufindi in Iringa. He explains that all research activities has been monitored at Makutupora in Dodoma region.
He, therefore, urges the public through these research centres to maintain relationship with researchers in order to have the solutions of agricultural challenges.
Dr Mkamilo asked TARI staff to conducts the productive research, which aimed at changing farmers lives and contributed in sustainable agriculture to benefit farmers and people in general.
He also reminded all researchers and TARI staff to stop conducting nonproductive research but being creative in order to bring money to their centres through different projects.
In his statement the agricultural sector accounts for only 30 percent of the gross domestic product despite over 75 percent of all Tanzanians involved in agricultural activities.
He was quoted saying that the country is now needed to achieve the highest level of agricultural productivity for the farmer to support industrial development.
Also TARI has the mandate of disseminating research results to stakeholders and scientific community, these stakeholders include; farmers, consumers among others.