TPHPA to obtain 3bn/- locust control aircraft

14Mar 2024
Francis Kajubi
Dar es salaam
The Guardian
TPHPA to obtain 3bn/- locust control aircraft

THE government is set to purchase spraying aircraft costing a total of 3bn/- to increase efficiency in the control of locusts and red-billed quelea quelea.



Prof Joseph Ndunguru, the Tanzania Plant Health and Pesticides Authority (TPHPA) director general, said at a press conference in Dar es Salaam yesterday the initiative is programmed for Coast, Morogoro, Tabora and Manyara regions in collaboration with the Desert Locust Control Organisation for East Africa (DLCO-EA).

With the initiative, TPHPA has managed to control 40m quelea quelea, implicitly saving 5,675 tons of rice, millet and sunflower, he said, elaborating that control is carried out by using a drone, spraying an effective pesticide named Bamidacy Plus 344SE.

TPHPA has trained 841 smallholder farmers on safe and proper utilization of Sulfur pesticide in cashewnut farms in Mtwara and Lindi regions, plus training 30 farmers in proper pesticide fumigation in Songwe region. They will be deployed in coffee farms to handle fumigation activities, he said.

He emphasised on investing in science and technology for Tanzania to achieve its industrialisation driven by agriculture, as industries rely on local raw materials to enhance sustainability of a productive agriculture sector.

He set out measures necessary to transform agriculture into a sustainable and productive one, in pursuit of the industrialisation ambition, when presenting TPHPA achievements, challenges and expectations for fiscal 2023/24.

"Let's prioritise research investment as within it lie the keys to uncovering better methods, seeds and pesticides that can significantly boost agricultural productivity,” he declared, referring to the usual expression that every dollar invested in research yields tenfold in profit.

The next crucial step involves practicing agriculture that integrates science, technology and innovation, highlighting that it is imperative to enhance collaboration between the government and the private sector across the entire agricultural spectrum.

The research administrator emphasised the importance of hard and soft agro-sector outlays to drive its success, like the necessity of for wide ranging irrigation infrastructure along with sound policies to foster investments.

Enhancing agricultural business systems like cold storage facilities is essential for boosting crop value alongside minimising pre and post-harvest crop losses, he added.


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