November 22, 2019
On November 21, the AgResults Tanzania Dairy Productivity Challenge Project held its official launch event to kick-off the prize competition that aims to increase dairy productivity among smallholder farmers. The event, which brought together stakeholders from across the public and private sectors, was an opportunity to reflect on the project’s potential to transform Tanzania’s dairy sector.
Held at the Sea Cliff Hotel in Dar es Salaam, the launch event featured speeches from the Permanent Secretary of Livestock, Professor Elisante Ole Gabriel, among other public and private sector dairy representatives. In her comments, Mercy Karanja from the Gates Foundation acknowledged the international development sector's dedication to this key topic. As part of the event, attendees – including potential competitors across the dairy value chain – asked questions to learn more about the parameters of the competition, which will begin in January 2020 and continue through April 2024.
“I feel greatly honored to grace the launch of this Pay-for-Results prize competition, which is the first of its kind in Tanzania,” said Professor Elisante Ole Gabriel, Permanent Secretary for the Ministry of Livestock and Fisheries. “The innovative AgResults Pay-for-Results prize competition addresses Tanzania farmers’ limited access to high-quality inputs, and the Ministry is committed to supporting it to ensure its success.”
Managed by Land O’Lakes Venture37, the project will use a competition structure to encourage companies to provide farmers with input bundles that will boost productivity and strengthen the dairy value chain. Tanzania’s dairy sector has historically struggled: 97% of cattle are low-yield breeds, poor management practices are prevalent, and there are seasonal fluctuations in the availability of forage and feed. As a result, many smallholder farmers struggle to access affordable private extension services and the high-quality inputs they need.
The project is designed to incentivize private sector competitors to package and deliver input bundles comprising a combination of parasite controls, high quality feed and/or fodder, vaccines, and/or artificial insemination inputs to smallholder dairy farmers. By encouraging businesses to provide both input bundles and advisory services, the project will address a variety of gaps in Tanzania’s dairy value chain.
As farmers gain access to quality inputs and receive regular training, their knowledge of livestock management will improve as will their use of vaccines and health inputs, in turn boosting the nutrition of cows. Healthier and more productive cows will improve the quality of the milk, positioning smallholder farmers to participate more fully in formal markets. Accessing these markets will drive up smallholder farmers’ incomes and cement their relationships with key value chain actors.
Over four years, the project aims to achieve approximately 23 million liters of additional milk production, translating in part to $9.4 million in additional farmer revenue and $4.14 million in competitor revenue. These may be ambitious goals, but the dynamic conversations from the launch event reflect the collective dedication and enthusiasm that position the competition well for success.
“We are very excited to be here today and be a part of this innovative approach to strengthen dairy productivity in Tanzania,” said Rodrigo Ortiz, lead consultant for AgResults. “This prize competition has the potential to transform the country’s dairy sector, specifically for its smallholder farmers.”
For more information, including details about the prize structure, visit the AgResults Tanzania Dairy Productivity Challenge project page. Please note that this page will continue to be updated through January 2020.
The project is part of AgResults, a $145 million collaborative initiative between the governments of Australia, Canada, the United Kingdom, the United States, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and the World Bank Group that uses prize competitions to incentivize the private sector to overcome market barriers and create lasting change. Under AgResults’ Pay-for-Results model, these competitions encourage actors to achieve predetermined results thresholds and quality for monetary prizes.