Tanzanian Government Initiates Nationwide Soil Health Assessment

The Tanzanian government has launched a nationwide soil health assessment project implemented by OCP Company on its behalf. Initially, the project will be executed in four regions: Morogoro, Rukwa, Mbeya, and Iringa. The government’s goal is to prepare a unique map highlighting areas where various crops can thrive and the amount of fertilizer required. This is expected to assist farmers in boosting their productivity.

In an interview with a reporter, the CEO of OCP Company, Dr. Mshindo Msolla, stated that they decided to embark on this strategy to enable farmers to be more productive and profitable through agriculture.

Dr. Msolla noted that in many areas across the country, farmers lack the knowledge about what type of soil is suitable for which crop, resulting in potential loss when they plant indiscriminately. “Having identified this problem in soil health, our company has come up with a lasting solution to assess soil health so that every farmer can know what crop to plant in their area, considering the use of quality seeds, fertilizers, and experts,” said Dr. Msolla.

He announced that preparations to start soil health assessment exercises have been completed and they are set to begin working in those four regions. Their aim is to extend the service to all regions of Tanzania to assist farmers in gaining more from farming, compared to the present situation where they face various challenges.

The director of the Agricultural Research Institute (TARI), based in Uyole, Mbeya region, explained they’ve been assigned the responsibility of executing the soil health assessment project in the four regions.

Being experienced agricultural researchers, they aim to address the soil health issue in various project areas completely. He added that besides initiating soil health assessments, TARI continues to educate farmers on better land use, modern technology, and provides them with agricultural experts to teach the best ways of increasing their crop yields.

The District Commissioner of Kalambo in Rukwa region, Kalorius Misungwi, applauded the stakeholders for initiating the soil health assessment project. He noted there was a significant problem of soil fertility, which led to farmers suffering losses in their crops. He expressed that the project would help farmers identify the right types of seeds and fertilizers to use in each area when the farming season approaches.