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Soil Health Consortia (Tanzania Consortium)

Agriculture is the mainstay of the Tanzanian economy. It accounts for about half of the national income, three quarters of merchandise exports and is source of food and provides employment opportunities to about 80% of Tanzanians. Profitable agriculture depends largely on healthy soils, good seeds and existence of remunerative output markets. Soil health research findings from the different zones are mainly shared among researchers and development partners from the respective zones but are rarely shared with scientists in the other zones. National forums which bring together researchers working on the same theme to share and discuss findings and recommendations from their zonal work are few and uncoordinated. Furthermore, there is no common communication and coordination mechanism for the NARS scientists, the international agricultural research centers and other local and international soil health research stakeholders. This lack of one-stop shop for information on ISFM results in wasteful duplication of efforts. Furthermore, the research findings are not packaged in user-friendly forms to be utilized by farmers, extension and policy makers, exacerbating the problem of poor uptake and impacting negatively on the livelihoods of the farmers.

The Tanzania Soil Health Consortium (TASCHO) was initiated in 2013 through a grant from AGRA with the International Plant Nutrition Institute (IPNI) as the main grantee and TASCHO as a sub-grantee to compile, share and scale up ISFM technologies released by different zones, institutions and other partners in order to improve food security and income among small-scale resource-poor farmers in Tanzania. To achieve this, the coordination team has put together taskforces on; research, extension, policy, monitoring and evaluation and fundraising from experts drawn from NARS, universities, extension, international agricultural research/development organizations and private sector.

TASHCO is expected to:

  • Minimize wasteful duplication of efforts and consequently improve the efficient use of limited resources among the zones and different partners.
  • Enhance collaboration with and increase prospects for developing joint communication among the stakeholders who are often the same for all the projects.
  • Develop joint protocols for demonstrations and trials that the stakeholders will conduct in different locations.
  • Bring and build transparency, trust and a clear understanding of programs and projects on soil and land management related issues in the country that are funded by various donors, and thus build synergy and leverage each other’s resources.
  • Collect and collate legacy data that is needed to develop fertilizer recommendations.
  • Develop and strengthen the technical and delivery capacity of the members.

 

Additional Resources

 

 

 

 

Coordinator: 

Rose Ubwe
Selian Agricultural Research Institute (SARI)
 

Advisor: 

Stephen Lyimo
Selian Agricultural Research Institute (SARI)
 

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