Enhancing Agroecology Friendly Policies and Practices
Agricultural Non State Actors Forum (ANSAF)
Agroecology Hub of Tanzania, including Sokoine University of Agriculture, RECODA, Tanzania Agricultural Research Institute (TARI), Sustainable Agriculture Tanzania (SAT), and Nelson Mandela African Institution of Science and Technology (NMAIST); Agroecology Hub; government entities the Ministry of Agriculture, Ministry of Livestock and Fisheries, President Office (regional administration and local authorities), Vice President Office–Environment, and members of parliament through respective committees
Agriculture employs about 68 percent of the Tanzania workforce, most as smallholder producers (FAO, 2018) who face myriad impacts of climate change: soil quality changes, increased pests and diseases, prolonged drought, and water scarcity. This vulnerability, compounded by projections of climate change, are expected to thwart achievements in economic growth, human development, and poverty reduction, with women affected the most. The Tanzania government has committed to a number of policies and plans; however, adaptation actions within agriculture still receive insufficient support (Loboguerrero et al., 2019) in terms of resources and strong institutions.
Initiatives are being implemented, including Agroecology Hub. Agroecological approaches favor natural processes, limit purchased inputs, promote closed cycles with minimal negative externalities, and stress local knowledge and participatory processes. Participatory processes anchor knowledge development and practice through experience as well as more conventional scientific methods (HLPE, 2019).
Agroecology is scantily addressed in Tanzania’s decision-making process and rural development programs, including extension. Practices are disseminated by a few local associations or NGOs that promote and lead several development projects. Inadequate government concern is a main constraint to developing agroecology at the farm level (Paracchini et al., 2020). A vacuum exists as to which institution is designated to take charge.
ANSAF recognizes agroecology’s role in improving access to local, sustainable, nutritious food using collaborative research and knowledge-sharing with smallholder farmers, research institutions, and development organizations in Tanzania, the inadequate coordination and implementation of agroecology efforts aside.
To contribute to sustainable agricultural transformation in Tanzania, specifically:
Strengthen agroecology platforms for communication, learning, and advocacy
Promote learning and mass awareness on agroecology
Enhance friendly and inclusive agroecology policies and practices
Outputs and Outcomes:
Mechanisms in place for participation and fair representation of smallholder farmers, including youth and women
Information analyzed on priority issues and resource allocation raised and presented to LGAs by smallholder farmers
Review of policies and practices affecting smallholder farmers analyzed and advocated for
Inclusive national and local level agroecology stakeholder dialogues
Agroecology-related issues incorporated into national policies and decision-making processes
Lobbying meetings with decision-makers convened; strategic alliance and coalitions on advocating for smallholder holders established and strengthened