Southern Agricultural Growth Corridor in Tanzania Programme and Food and Nutrition Security in COVID-19 Crisis
Benedict Mongula, Hezron Makundi, Rose Shayo
University of Dar Es Salaam, Institute of Development Studies, Tanzania
Southern Agricultural Growth Corridor in Tanzania is a programme to promote agriculture in the southern part of Tanzania from the eastern coast through the southern highlands. The programme was evolved by private investors, the government of Tanzania and development partners, in line with partnership framework proposed by G20, and along Responsible Agricultural Investments (RAI), endorsed by UN General Assembly in 2012. SAGCOT was expected to bring over 350,000 hectares under productive cultivation by large scale and smallholder farmers, with benefits in employment creation, increased outgrower activities and Corporate Social Responsibility. It was assumed investors guided by RAI principles with wide scale support of Government, Development Partners, international finance and civil society and farmers organisations will contribute to a huge success of the programme. But this was not the case, as the principles became flouted by a number of investors, unforeseen bottlenecks arose and Government support turned lukewarm. Undermined also by low commitment to the Partnership, poor communication and politics, the programme requires concerted efforts to live to its expectations and the expectations of the New Alliance for Food and Nutrition (NAFSN). In the ensuing COVID-19 crises of economic recession, capital and labour, this is all the more important in order for SAGCOT to contribute to global food and nutrition security for which NAFSN was conceived. This presentation is an evidence based paper examining the inclusive character of six SAGCOT large scale investments and their implications on food security and nutrition in the context of COVID-19 crisis. It proposes urgent national and international interventions to enable the programme to effectively contribute to global food security and nutrition.
Keywords: Agriculture, COVID-19, food and nutrition security, inclusive large scale agriculture, outgrower farming, principles of responsible agricultural investments
Contact Address: Benedict Mongula, University of Dar Es Salaam, Institute of Development Studies, University of Dar Es Salaam, Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania, e-mail: bmongulagmail.com