IITA Tanzania have received a boost in its effort at promoting cassava processing with the completion and handing over of newly constructed facilities for a training center on cassava processing. The facilities include an equipment fabrication workshop, a cassava processing center and offices.
The project was funded by the Support to Agricultural Research for Development of Strategic Crops in Africa (SARD-SC) project, a multinational, CGIAR-led project, funded by the African Development Bank and led by IITA on a land provided by the Government of Tanzania.
At the presentation of the building, , Veronica Uzokwe, Country Coordinator of IITA/SARD-SC emphasized that the centre will go a long way to support IITA’s effort to disseminate cassava postharvest innovation/technologies and value addition which will in turn contribute to the overall improvement in the food security to overcome hunger, improve livelihoods and take the country out of poverty.
The buildings make up an integral part of the project’s efforts to support the generation of agricultural technology and innovations through the construction of improved facilities that support efficient dissemination of postharvest cassava processing technologies to the farming communities.
“The project is complete and ready to operate; we hope that IITA will get more funds for operational efficiency,” said Uzokwe. She also added that the center will bring stakeholders together from across the country for both practical and theoretical lessons on postharvest cassava processing technologies.
Bakari Abdallah, IITA/SARD-SC Research Assistant mentioned that the project has purchased improved cassava postharvest processing machines such as a hammer mill, fryers, hydraulic presses, and peeling and chipping machines that will be soon be installed. These machines will fast track the processing of quality cassava products as against using local technologies.