The Tanzania Times
Eastern Africa News Network

Tanzania imports more agricultural seeds than what the country exports

Tanzania is importing more seeds into its agricultural sector than what the country is exporting out even as the world seems to be rushing to buy such farm inputs from Tanzania.

So far, as per latest figures, Tanzania is currently exporting 1,172 tons of the farm inputs overseas, which is a slight increase from the 1,094 tons that the country exported in the previous fiscal year.

The Director General of Tanzania Official Seed Certification Institute, Dr Patrick Mgwediagi said TOSCI has also issued out a total of 65 seeds exporting licences to traders and registered business entities.

But on the other hand Tanzania has been importing nearly 60,000 tons of seeds to fill the deficit of the kernels in the country’s agricultural sector.

This should be more than fifty times the amount of exported seeds.

And in the same vein, the institute has already issued 4188 seed importation licences and permits to that effect.

Tanzania, according to experts, needs an average of 190,000 tons of seeds to service the country’s farming sector.

Meanwhile the TOSCI Director General says they managed to inspect and officially registered a total of 2,782 new seed farms across the country, covering at least 122,290 hectares and conducted a professional inspection of at least 330 seeds warehouses.

There are ongoing efforts to conduct thorough inspection exercises in over 8,710 seed outlets in Tanzania so as to ensure that all kernels being traded are certified in addition to training more than 3100 seed dealers and agents.

A total of 1811 seed dealers in the country have so far also been registered, with an online enrolment portal to that effect being rolled out.

With its head offices in Morogoro the Tanzania Official Seed Certification Institute is responsible for verification of new crop varieties for official release and certification of seeds produced for sale in the country. TOSCI also has branches in the Mwanza, Arusha and Njombe regions.

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