IITA’s African Cassava Agronomy Initiative (ACAI) conducted a training for more than 36 participants on the ‘Effective and Safe Use of Herbicides in Cassava Fields’ in Tanzania to build capacity for the participants to train farmers in handling and use herbicides perfectly on their own.
The event tailored as the Training of Trainers (ToT) was held at the Naliendele Agricultural Research Institute (NARI) in Mtwara region of Southern Tanzania on 28th September 2017.
The training included workshop sessions giving the context of cassava production by applying improved agronomic practices that are disseminated under the ACAI project and the Cassava Weed Management Project.
Participants also received practical lessons on the use of Knapsack sprayers, protective gear, selection of the correct equipment and mix tank calibration.
The training is one of ACAI’s capacity building objectives aimed at equipping new trainers with the background knowledge, skills and practical experience to provide cassava growers with training and technical support on herbicide use.
The director of research NARI, Dr Omari Mponda expressed optimism in training as a positive contribution toward raising the standards of cassava production systems.
“the use of herbicides in cassava fields, as a substitute for manual (hand hoe) weeding (will) reduce the cost of production in cassava field, saving time and of course reducing drudgery associated with manual weeding.” Dr Mponda
The training drew a collection of lead farmers, agricultural professionals and extension agents. IITA-ACAI System Agronomist in Tanzania Dr Veronica NE Uzokwe spearheaded the training in collaboration with colleagues from Cassava: Adding Value for Africa (CAVA II) an ACAI implementation partner.