TANZANIA – The government of Tanzania is planning to introduce safety and standard mark for seaweed and sardines as a move to expand its market share within and outside the country.

The move has been driven by the fact that the sea products have for many years failed to compete in the international market for not having the standard mark leading to unreliable market.

So far, the Ministry of Livestock and Fisheries in collaboration with the Tanzania Bureau of Standards (TBS) have managed to prepare two standard marks TBS/AFDC 23 for sardine flour and TBS/AFDC 5714 for dry seaweed, reports Daily News.

According to Permanent Secretary (PS) in the Ministry, Dr Rashid Tamatamah, seaweed cultivation in the country amounted to 1, 449 tonnes in the year 2019/20.

From the production, 10 per cent was utilized domestically and 90 per cent exported in countries including China, USA, UK, Denmark and France.

The PS noted that up to 3,000 people in the Coastal regions are engaged in sardine fishing and seaweed farming, placing the two as crucial commodities in boosting the economy of the country.

In Zanzibar, a semi-autonomous region of Tanzania, production of sea-weed is about 35,000 tonnes, making it the second export product in the country.

Recently, Cargill partnered with The Nature Conservancy, to help seaweed farmers in Zanzibar to adopt best farming practices that will boost their incomes and restore the coastal ecosystem.

The program will be supported by C-Weed Corporation, Cargill’s local supplier and conducted in collaboration with the Government and citizens of Zanzibar.

The pilot initiative announced by Cargill will work with farmers in Pemba and Unguja Islands in the Zanzibar archipelago in the Indian Ocean.

Together, the companies aim to provide farmers with adequate support and access to the right infrastructures, to ensure an efficient and sustainable seaweed supply chain.

International buyers predict increased demand for seaweed since it is a raw material used in a wide range of increasingly popular products as diverse as confectionary, yogurts, and cosmetics.

According to reports by allied market research, the global seaweed market size was valued at US$4 billion in 2017 and is projected to reach US$9.7 billion by 2024 registering a CAGR of 12.0% from 2018 to 2024.

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