To ease your site search, article categories are at bottom of page.

January 30, 2010

Tanzania predicts 9.4% increase in tea output

by Phillip Hogan


Africa’s fourth largest tea producer predicts a 9.4% increase in crop yield as estate management improves within the country.

The Tea Board of Tanzania reported that the production of tea may increase to 35,000 metric tons in the twelve months through June, an increase of 9.4% over the previous year. Compared to other countries, Tanzania’s fledgling tea industry has a long way to go before it can compete with the likes of Kenya, Malawi or Uganda – which are currently Africa’s largest tea producers – but recent Government subsidies for small-holder farmers and re-investment and modification of processing factories could help invigorate the country’s once ailing tea industry.

Tea was first introduced into the east African country, in the Amani and Rungwe regions, in 1902 by German settlers. In 1934 Tanzania produced 23 tons of tea; this number increased after World War 2 when the British, ever the tea lovers, took over the management of tea plantations and large scale estates within the country. Tanzania’s tea plantations and estates were steadily increased overtime and in 1960 over 3,722 tons of tea was produced.

Commercial tea production began in earnest in 1966, five years after Tanzania’s independence and the nationalization of large scale estates by the newly formed government. The Tanzanian Tea Authority (TTA) was set up and controlled the country’s tea industry and large estates, also buying tea from small-hold farmers - many of which were encouraged to take up tea farming by the government, at a fixed price.

By the late 1900’s small-holder tea production was on the brink of collapse as economic downturn and stringent price controls, set by the Tea Authority, effectively halted Tanzania’s tea industry as it was unable to compete with their larger neighbours.

The role of the TTA has changed over recent years as foreign investment and loosening of pricing regulations by the government has helped to rekindle the Tanzanian tea industry.

Small-holder associations have also given life to small-scale, independent producers by giving access to resources and markets that were previously unavailable or out of reach.

Tea in Tanzania is either grown by small-holders, on plots averaging less than a hectare, or on large scale estates, often exceeding 1,000 hectares.

Grown in the foot hills in the north and south of the country; Usambara in the Masai Steppe in the North, Njombe and Mufindi regions which border the Great Rift Valley and Lake Malawi in the South.

Drought affected tea production in the east African country last season, cutting crop yields to 14% below targets.

One-third of Tanzania’s tea is now produced by small-scale farmers which number around 36,000. Government subsidies and investment in small-scale farmers and in processing factories, respectively, is seen as the cause of the predicted increase in output.

Tea News

Article Categories

AGRA agribusiness agrochemicals agroforestry aid Algeria aloe vera Angola aquaculture banana barley beans beef bees Benin biodiesel biodiversity biof biofuel biosafety biotechnology Botswana Brazil Burkina Faso Burundi CAADP Cameroon capacity building cashew cassava cattle Central African Republic cereals certification CGIAR Chad China CIMMYT climate change cocoa coffee COMESA commercial farming Congo Republic conservation agriculture cotton cow pea dairy desertification development disease diversification DRCongo drought ECOWAS Egypt Equatorial Guinea Ethiopia EU EUREPGAP events/meetings expo exports fa fair trade FAO fertilizer finance fisheries floods flowers food security fruit Gabon Gambia gender issues Ghana GM crops grain green revolution groundnuts Guinea Bissau Guinea Conakry HIV/AIDS honey hoodia horticulture hydroponics ICIPE ICRAF ICRISAT IFAD IITA imports India infrastructure innovation inputs investment irrigation Ivory Coast jatropha kenaf keny Kenya khat land deals land management land reform Lesotho Liberia Libya livestock macadamia Madagascar maiz maize Malawi Mali mango marijuana markets Mauritania Mauritius mechanization millet Morocco Mozambique mushroom Namibia NEPAD Niger Nigeria organic agriculture palm oil pastoralism pea pest control pesticides pineapple plantain policy issues potato poultry processing productivity Project pyrethrum rai rain reforestation research rice rivers rubber Rwanda SADC Sao Tome and Principe seed seeds Senegal sesame Seychelles shea butter Sierra Leone sisal soil erosion soil fertility Somalia sorghum South Africa South Sudan Southern Africa spices standards subsidies Sudan sugar sugar cane sustainable farming Swaziland sweet potato Tanzania tariffs tea tef tobacco Togo tomato trade training Tunisia Uganda UNCTAD urban farming value addition value-addition vanilla vegetables water management weeds West Africa wheat World Bank WTO yam Zambia Zanzibar zero tillage Zimbabwe

  © 2007 Africa News Network design by Ourblogtemplates.com

Back to TOP