TANZANIA will soon start selling its processed coffee to South Africa as part of fulfilling agreements reached between the two countries aimed at boosting trade.
The Permanent secretary in the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment, Prof Adolf Mkenda, revealed this at the just-concluded Dar es Salaam International Trade Fair (DITF).
He said the Tanzania Trade Development Authority (TANTRADE) in collaboration with the Tanzania Private Sector Foundation (TPSF) have started working out modalities that will make the country’s goods including coffee penetrate South African markets.
The move is a result of recent agreements made between President John Magufuli and his South African counterpart Jacob Zuma when the latter visited Tanzania recently.
Mkenda said: “Industrial economy without foreign markets cannot be achieved,” noting that the country was trying to add value to its agricultural products before exporting them.
He encouraged Tanzanian coffee processors to ensure their products that meet international standards to reduce impediments in most markets abroad.
He said that coffee beans that are organically grown stand a better chance to win global markets, as this was a major requirement to ensure quality products.
The country was losing billions of shillings when selling unprocessed coffee, while this is often done to benefit coffee growers.
TANTRADE Acting Director General Edwin Rutageruka said the country produces some of the best coffee beans in the world.
Tantrade will now start to distribute coffee processing machines in the country to enable more people to consume locally made coffee, he stated.
Citing figures, he said that coffee production was important for the country’s economy, with output averaging 30,000 to 40,000 metric tons annually, where 70 per cent of the produce is Arabica and 30 per cent is Robusta.
Arabica is grown in the northern part of Kilimanjaro region, Mbeya, Matengo Highlands, Mbinga, Usambara Mountains, Iringa, Morogoro, Kigoma and Ngara, while Robusta is found in Bukoba zone of Kagera Region, he added.