Hamisi Abdallah Malawaga is one of the farmers from Kilosa district in Morogoro who had received training from SUGECO on nutritional awareness and Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) under the Nutritional Awareness and Cash Crop Value Chain (NACC) project. This project provides trainings to farmers in Gairo and Kilosa district in Morogoro about yellow maize, Orange Fleshed Sweet Potatoes (OFSP), and sesame. Hamisi is among the 60 farmers who prefer to learn and to cultivate yellow maize in Kilosa district. He received the seeds and fertilizer as a startup kit to cultivate in one acre of land.
Hamisi found out about SUGECO through a one-day training seminar held by SUGECO in their village about benefits of yellow maize, OFSP, and sesame. Before the training he didn’t know about GAP, for example on preparation of farm before planting, and on how to choose good seeds and nutritious crops. At the beginning he was cultivating white maize but the yield was not high.
‘‘Before I received the training support I was cultivating white maize in a one acre of land and the yield was very low at 5 bags of produce. But now that I cultivate yellow maize, I am getting a much higher yield. This year alone, I managed to get 16 bags of produce, which is a progress to me’’
Apart from increasing the production he has been able to raise the income, to educate other 20 farmers to grow yellow maize, to register more than 50 farmers who will grow yellow maize in the upcoming year, to be able to pay school fees for his children, and to provide other basic needs to his family.
Aside from providing training, SUGECO also support farmers through market linkages. We have linked over 200 yellow maize farmers to Tan Feed Company based in Morogoro. Through this link, farmers are able to sell their yellow maize produce directly from their villages. Hamisi is the one who has been selected by the villagers as a representative to sell their crops under close supervision from SUGECO Agricultural Officer, Mr. Baraka Mashishanga
‘‘We are very happy that we are selling our crops in a stable market. We feel more encouraged to cultivate at this higher yield for the market and for our family use. Through this, we have been able to open bank accounts through the support from SUGECO for our farmers to deposit their money after selling which is a great deal for our farmers’’.