Now a days young generation in Tanzania particularly african youth, farmers and entrepreneurs are most driven into agriculture sector to add a hand to promote sustainable agriculture.
what is sustainable farming ?
As the global population is alarmingly increasing to grow, and we are faced with the climate change, soil degradation, and scarcity of water resources. Sustainable approach to agriculture has becoming increasingly important. Sustainable agriculture is the practice of producing food, fibre, and other plant or animal products in a manner that does not hurt the environment, deplete natural resources, or jeopardize animal and human health and welfare.
Small farmers role in sustainable farming?
Small farmers play a critical role in promoting sustainable agriculture because they often rely on traditional knowledge and practices that have been passed down through generations. They are also more likely to use methods that are better suited to local conditions and resources, and that minimize the use of synthetic inputs like pesticides and fertilizers.
Small farmers have an essential role in sustaining local economies and communities, in addition to encouraging sustainable agriculture. They are frequently the primary food suppliers in their communities and may contribute to food security by diversifying crops and using sustainable methods that support soil health and biodiversity.
Small farmers, on the other hand, frequently face numerous challenges that make it difficult to implement sustainable techniques. They may not have access to funding, markets, or other resources that would allow them to invest in new technologies and infrastructure. They may also face competition from huge agribusinesses, who can afford to produce food on a greater scale and at a lower cost.
Despite these barriers, there are several examples of small farmers who have overcome them and achieved significant success in promoting sustainable agriculture. Some small farmers have achieved a significant success, and Dickson Alex, the founder of AGL Farms in Tanzania, is one of them. The article source is taken from euronews.
Dickson Alex’s inspiring story
AGL Farms, founded by managing director Dickson Alex, has become a success story in Tanzania’s agriculture industry. Starting with just a small 30 by 30 square metre piece of land, Dickson’s hard work and dedication have grown AGL Farms to 49 acres. However, the road to success was not easy. He has to work from the morning to evening to achieve the success of what he had now and reap him significant rewards. Dickson had to leave his city life and move to the countryside to pursue a career in agriculture.
“There is no culture like agriculture” a slogan said by Dickson Alex.
Leaving city life for a career in agriculture
To move to the village from the city for the people is not an easy especially to the youth in this competitive world. At his 20’s Dickson decided to peruse career in agriculture, and he had never imagined to visit or work till now. His parental is a business background and have no association with farm life. It needs more deal of courage moving from the city to village.
Winning a contract with Julius Nyerere Hydroelectric Power Station
Despite the challenges, AGL Farms has achieved significant success, winning a contract with Julius Nyerere Hydroelectric Power Station to supply fresh vegetables to over 3,000 workers. This initiative is one of Tanzania’s largest government-run strategic projects, and it’s right on the doorstep of AGL Farms.
Using drip irrigation technology to produce throughout the year
Hamis Nyembenyembe, AGL Farm’s Agronomist, notes that the business has come a long way since its inception, and people passing by can see the change.
“It is very important to use technology because, with drip irrigation technology, you can produce throughout the year, whether the rain comes or doesn’t. Most of the farmers depend on rain, but for us, we don’t,” Dickson enthused.
Employing young people and women to promote employment opportunities
AGL Farms has also focused on employing young people and women, recognizing the challenges faced by the youth in finding employment in Africa. The FAO and UNIDO have worked together to create jobs in agriculture in Africa, including Tanzania, to give young people a chance, which also helps the continent’s economy grow.
Contribution to sustaining local economies and communities
According to the World Economic Forum (WEF), report, agricultural technology inputs and resources will benefit farmers and customers, increasing the profitability of the agriculture business. It also states that the technology advancements can help modify how food is produced throughout the world, making it less harmful to the climate and environment.
Positive impact on the agriculture business model
Omari Juma Bakari, in charge of AGL’s operations, explains that they started farming in the Tanzanian city of Kibiti because they saw problems in the agriculture business model. They wanted to make a positive impact and give young people an opportunity to work in value chains such as production, packaging, and retailing of products, both on and off the farm.
Giving young people a chance in agriculture
“People say, ‘Ah, you are doing agriculture, you’ve failed in life, you’re zero.’ But no, this is my office. I am doing work,” says AGL Farms Operations Manager Omari Juma. “I see myself going to the farm in smart clothes, not wearing torn clothes. I go there like an executive. Okay, fine. I’ll do some work, maybe catch some dirt, but I enjoy it,” he adds.
Making farming a viable career path for the next generation
AGL Farms’ success in promoting sustainable agriculture and providing employment opportunities to young people and women is an inspiration to other small farmers in Tanzania and beyond. As Dickson notes, with government promotion and investment in youth projects, people are starting to believe in farming, and it can be a viable career path for the next generation.
Dickson Alex’s success story at AGL Farms in promoting sustainable agriculture and providing employment opportunities to young people and women is an inspiration to other small farmers in Tanzania and beyond. With government promotion and investment in youth projects, farming can be a viable career path for the next generation. It is critical to recognize the importance of small farmers in sustaining local economies and communities and promoting sustainable agriculture practices to address the challenges faced by the agriculture industry.
Article source: Meet the Tanzanian farmer revolutionising the horticultural landscape
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