Cassava farmers benefit from AKILIMO tools in Kibaha district

Cassava farmers benefit from AKILIMO tools in Kibaha district

The African Cassava Agronomy Initiative (ACAI) that is under the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) has continued to disseminate AKILIMO technologies to cassava growers in Kibaha district so that to promote cassava cultivation and increase farmers’ incomes.

AKILIMO offers a suite of tools and materials for cassava growers, extension workers, and organizations that promote improved cassava cultivation practices.

The ACAI’s agronomist, Abubakari Mzanda, led the dissemination activity at a farmer’s day exhibition that organized by the Tanzania Agriculture Research Institute (TARI) held in Kibaha district on May, 2021. The ACAI participated in this event to encourage farmers to use the best agronomic practices. Visitors to ACAI’s booth were given AKILIMO printable guides to help them understand Tailored Fertilizer recommendations for cassava (FR), six steps to Cassava Weed Management and Best Plating Practices, scheduled planting and high starch contents, and intercropping.

Elsewhere, the farmers also got hands instructions on how to use the AKILIMO App to help them get access to information and recommendations. This APP will greatly help them to solve challenges they face in their agricultural activities such as lack of awareness on the exact date and time for planting cassava. The APP gives specific recommendations for schedule planting that will make it easier for them to plant cassava at a specified period to obtain high-quality cassava.

During the session, farmers who visited the ACAI booth expressed satisfaction with the AKILIMO tools noted that they are going to use them in their fields. The lesson they achieved gave them hope as they are going to get a lot of yields and incomes.

 “For my side, I have discovered that this is a simple way for farmers to learn about the cassava crop; I also promise to go and use it, and I’ll tell my fellow farmers to do the same”. Rosemary Giteta said.

The ACAI project in collaboration with her partners plays a strategic role in the country’s cassava development process. It has already made a big contribution to many farmers, and now most of the regions in Tanzania are growing cassava crops. Other partners who collaborated with ACAI includes the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), Mennonite Economic Development Associates (MEDA) and Tanzania Agriculture Research Institute (TARI) played a big role in making this event successful.