TUNAWEZA (We can!): Cassava Farmers in Mkuranga harness the Entrepreneurial spirit

TUNAWEZA (We can!): Cassava Farmers in Mkuranga harness the Entrepreneurial spirit

in News

The Mkuranga District Commercial Farmers Organization (DCFO) successfully delivered 3075kg of high quality cassava flour to Coast Millers Ltd. on 12th November 2013, with support from the Common Fund of Commodities (CFC).

Since September 2013, VECO and DCFO have been negotiating with CFC about the delivery of 5 tons of cassava flour. However, there was a delay as the Tanzanian Bureau of Standards had to be involved. This did not deter the farmers, as 3 of the 6 CFO processing centers were still able to deliver 3 tons.

If the first supply of cassava is successfully launched to the national market, the DCFO could sign a supply contract of up to 12 months!

All 8 cooperatives supported by VECO will continue producing flour under their own brand, selling in a variety of shops. The organized delivery to Coastal Millers is an additional income and proves that the CFFOs have the capacity to deliver bulk quality produce on time. The 8 cooperatives involve 380 farming families.


The Common Fund for Commodities is an intergovernmental financial institution established within the framework of the United Nations. The Fund operates under the novel approach of commodity focus instead of the traditional country focus.

Coast Millers Limited is a wheat flour processor and distributor based in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. The company was established in 1989 and continues to supply the country with wheat flour products with a capacity of 250 metric tons per day. Cassava is a new commodity to Coast Millers, and they have started a pilot with production of branded packs known as Mpishi Mkuu, of 1kg and 25kg for traditional markets and supermarkets and launched on a national basis in July 2013.

The Mpishi Mkuu brand and its outsourced supply chain, (which includes VECO supported CFFOs) has been developed by Windward Commodities, a specialist in turning low-interest commodities into high-value brands, as part of a wider project managed by the International Institute for Tropical Agriculture with funding from the Common Fund for Commodities. Mpishi Mkuu is a high quality, whiter, cassava flour similar to fine wheat baking flours – but gluten-free.

Sales are currently restricted to retail and wholesale channels including supermarkets and village markets in Dar es Salaam and the surrounding areas. Even so, VECO has established a value chain which builds in a 50% premium over market prices for cassava farmers, and each party in the chain takes a reasonable profit including the IITA processing centers and the milling partner.

The 1 kg packaging for the Tanzanian market

Source: http://www.windwardcommodities.com/?page_id=71