15 PROBLEMS FACING THE FARMERS ON THE KILOMBERO VALLEY IRRIGATION SCHEME

15 PROBLEMS FACING THE FARMERS ON THE KILOMBERO VALLEY IRRIGATION SCHEME




kilombero irrigation scheme started in 1960 and it became a government parastatal called Sugar Development co-operation in 1968.

Today, it employs over 46,000 workers and it contributes 40% of the total sugar production in Tanzania.

It has mainly encouraged the development of out growers’ schemes.




Problems facing the farmers on the kilombero valley irrigation scheme

  • Diseases e.g. yellow wilt that destroys the sugarcane leading to reduced output.
  • Soil exhaustion due to monoculture leading to low output hence low export potential.
  • Leaching of soil due to the excessive water which leads to poor soils hence low productivity.




  • Pests e.g. snails which destroy the sugarcane hence leading to poor quality output.
  • Price fluctuation due to over production and competition with other sugar producing countries e.g. Uganda leading to low morale of farmers.
  • Shortage of labour especially during the harvesting period due to low population in the area.
  • Fire out breaks which destroy large parts of the farms leading to losses for the scheme.
  • Dangerous animals like snakes which scare away the farmers leading to labour shortage.




  • Presence of weeds which compete with sugarcane for water and soil nutrients leading to poor quality output.
  • Silting of the canals by floods which calls for regular dredging yet it’s very expensive.
  • It requires high capital investment to operate the scheme yet capital is not readily available.
  • Salinity of the soils due to excessive evaporation as a result of hot temperatures in the area.
  • Inefficient transport within the scheme which makes the delivery of sugar to the markets very difficult.
  • Natural hazards e.g. hailstorms and strong winds also destroy large parts of the scheme leading to losses.




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