Smallholder Farmers Go Commercial in Tanzania

Ambassador David Lane meets with farmers in Hoyohoyo Village, south of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, January 2013. [State Department photo/ Public Domain]

About the Author: David Lane serves as U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Agencies in Rome.

With the seven journalists accompanying me on our media tour, we said goodbye to Augustino, Fortunata, and the other farmers we had met around Arusha, and flew south to the humid, coastal climate of Dar es Salaam. We were eager to hear how the projects we had seen, along with many others across the country, are adding up to something bigger.

We spent a morning visiting a cassava multiplication project that the Government of Tanzania has undertaken in collaboration with the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). Cassava, a starchy root similar to the sweet potato, is a staple food in many parts of Tanzania.

On the way to Hoyohoyo Village, south of Dar… more »

Reporting on the U.S. Fight Against World Hunger

Villagers in Mtanga, Malawi, where U.N.-backed development projects are helping farmers grow maize and start fish farming, April 16, 2007. [AP File Photo]

About the Author: David Lane serves as U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Agencies in Rome.

Our journey started with an early morning flight into the Tanzanian city of Arusha, where we were greeted by the impressive sight of Mount Kilimanjaro, whose snow covered peak dominates the landscape.

I was on my first media tour as the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Agencies in Rome. Accompanying me was a group of talented reporters from five African countries — Malawi, Uganda, Ghana, Niger, and Tanzania — plus two Europeans from France and Italy.

The U.S. Mission I lead — to the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the World Food Programme (WFP), and the International… more »

By: Elisabeth Kvitashvili U.S. Alternate Permanent Representative to the United Nations Agencies in Rome, Italy, and Humanitarian Affairs Counselor for the U.S. Agency for International Development

Hunger is a chronic problem in both Chad and Niger, two of the world’s poorest countries. With large nomadic populations whose livelihood depends on their herds of camels and cattle, both countries have suffered severely from droughts. Chronic malnutrition threatens tens of thousands of children who lack access to clean water, preventative health care. and sufficient quantities of nutrient rich foods. The droughts have devastated livelihoods of both farmers and pastoralists in the Sahel, an arid and semi-arid region, sweeping through both countries that is chronically food insecure. On a recent field visit to the two countries where I was accompanied by Cristina Amaral, Africa Director of the United Nation’s Food and Agriculture Organization’s (FAO) Emergency Response Unit and Africa-based representatives of USAID’s Office of Food for Peace, I witnessed the efforts of FAO and the World Food Program (WFP), both of whom receive valuable financial support from USAID, in tackling the impacts of the drought on the most vulnerable populations. In addition to supporting the recovery of drought-affected households, both organizations are now using their resources in a more preventative fashion — in order to get at the root causes of the high levels of malnutrition in a more integrated fashion…