The AgResults Tanzania Dairy Productivity Challenge Project is a four-year, US$2.2 million prize competition that aims to increase dairy productivity by encouraging private sector actors to deliver inputs to smallholder farmers. By providing a prize for each bundle of high-quality inputs delivered, the competition will increase animal productivity, boost smallholder farmers’ incomes, and strengthen value chain relationships between dairy producers and the formal dairy sector.
The Tanzanian dairy sector, which is dominated by smallholder farmers, struggles for a variety of reasons: approximately 97% of Tanzania’s dairy cattle are low-yield breeds, poor management practices are prevalent, and there are seasonal fluctuations in the availability of forage and feed. This precludes many smallholder farmers from accessing affordable extension or veterinary services. The lack of high-quality inputs, such as parasite control, nutritious feed, vaccines, and artificial insemination (AI), is at the heart of the problem.
The project is designed to incentivize companies to package and deliver input bundles comprising a combination of parasite controls, high quality feed or fodder, vaccines, and/or artificial insemination inputs to smallholder dairy farmers. By encouraging companies to provide input bundles and advisory services to smallholder farmers, the project will address a variety of current weaknesses in Tanzania’s dairy value chain. As farmers gain access to these materials 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.
In Tanzania, AgResults will provide a prize for each bundle of productivity-increasing inputs delivered to smallholder farmer dairy producers, with incentives for delivery of more productive input bundles and a requirement to provide extension.
The project is expected to engage private sector companies in Tanzania's dairy value chain to deliver a variety of input bundles to smallholder farmers to increase milk production quantity and quality. By pairing these input bundles with required extension services, competitors will develop relationships with farmers and build sustainable networks to strengthen the entire value chain. Because bundles with multiple inputs will earn higher monetary prices, suppliers may create coalitions to package and deliver these complex bundles. As farmers continue to incorporate best practices and high-quality inputs, animal productivity will improve, and farmers will create links with commercial milk processors and reach formal markets. At the same time, rural households will have regular access to more nutritious milk for home consumption.
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