Private sector investments transforming Tanzania’s agricultural sector
Dar es Salaam, Tanzania – Private companies are now at the forefront of increasing the availability of agricultural inputs such as improved seeds, agrochemicals, fertilizers, veterinary services, transportation, and information to rural smallholder farmers across Tanzania.
Tanzania Agribusiness Window – a programme funded by the UK’s Foreign and Commonwealth Development Office (FCDO) and the Swedish International Cooperation Development Agency (Sida) and implemented by the Africa Enterprise Challenge Fund (AECF), surfaced innovative business models best poised to address challenges faced by smallholder farmers. Such challenges include the availability, acceptability, affordability, and accessibility of agricultural produce and products as well as access to processing infrastructure in both rural and remote areas.
TZAW availed funding to agricultural-oriented private sector companies in a wide range of value chains ranging from seed companies, horticulture, fruit and vegetables, potatoes, fertilizer, and cashew nuts. The program has impacted over half a million households, introduced innovative technologies, and changed how markets work for the poor.
Victoria Sabula, CEO of the AECF said,
“The programme has proven the case for investing in start-up and early-stage agribusinesses especially those turning research into innovative products to fill a proven demand. We have seen amazing technologies and innovations being introduced in Tanzania such as soil testing, seed quality verification through USSD and innovative insect-derived protein used as feed supplement for livestock among others. Furthermore, the programme has proven the case for investing in end markets development by enhancing the ability of firms to process niche products and services for niche markets, extruding maximum benefits from respective value chains such as cashew nuts, macadamia, avocado and vanilla.”
Kemi Williams, Development Director, British High Commission in Tanzania said,
“We believe that market-based approaches represent a proven development model and through this TZAW programme we have been able to demonstrate that through a private sector approach it is possible to transform the livelihoods of rural and marginalized people.”
Stephen Mwakifamba, Senior Advisor, Embassy of Sweden in Tanzania said,
“Availing agricultural inputs in an efficient and affordable way is transformational for agriculture in Tanzania. The companies funded by this programme have supported smallholder farmers to access seed, fertilizer, equipment and technology that was previously unavailable or unaffordable. This has changed how agriculture is practiced in Tanzania and the benefits that smallholder farmers get.”
TZAW has been transformational for Tanzania and has contributed to efforts to increase the production and productivity of smallholder farmers. This has in turn, increased the availability of food, stabilized prices, and ensured a healthier population.
Notes to Editors
The AECF is an African development funder that supports innovative commercial businesses in the agribusiness, renewable energy and adaptation to climate change technology sectors. It aims to reduce rural poverty, promote resilient communities and create jobs through private sector development.
Launched in 2008, the AECF has mobilized over US$ 420 million, leveraged more than US$ 771 million in matching capital, improved the lives of more than 30 million people, created, and sustained over 26,500 direct jobs. We have supported 375 impact-focused Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in 26 countries across sub-Saharan Africa in 40 value chains in our focal sectors of agribusiness and renewable energy.
AECF provides patient capital to highly innovative, early-stage and growing enterprises that are hidden gems, poised for greatness, but that struggle to access funding from traditional sources of finance.
For more information visit: http://aecfafrica.org/
About the Tanzania Agribusiness Window (TZAW)
The Tanzania Agribusiness Window (TZAW) was established to enhance the ability of agricultural businesses in Tanzania to support smallholder farmers to increase their productivity and income.
Funded by UK’s Foreign and Commonwealth Development Office (FCDO) and the Swedish International Cooperation Development Agency (SIDA), the programme selected and funded 52 agribusiness companies across a range of value chains and made available US$ 38.9 million, dispensed through grant and repayable grant mechanisms and technical assistance over the past ten years.
For more information on TZAW visit: https://www.aecfafrica.org/approach/our-programmes/agribusiness/tanzania-agribusiness-window-tzaw/