The role of seaweed farming in poverty alleviation in Tanzania

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University of Dar es Salaam
This study examined the role of seaweed farming in poverty alleviation in Tanzania. The researcher specifically explored sources of income and gender relations of labour; local definitions of poverty; causes and consequences of poverty as perceived/experienced by different households; the reason why the majority of seaweed farmers are women; the impact of seaweed farming adaptive strategies to increase and attain sustainable yields; the role of government, non-governmental organizations and seaweed developers in promoting seaweed farming and their contribution to poverty alleviation .The research was limited to a few villages of the coastal communities, namely Kijiru ,Sadani and Mchukuuni in Tanga region and Paje Jambiani and Bwejuu in Zanzibar. The findings of the study were drawn from sixty seaweed farmers, both men and women from the above mentioned villages, including officials from the government fisheries section, seaweed exporting companies and the SEEGAAD project which deals with promotion of seaweed farming in Tanzania. Data collection techniques used included interviews, questionnaires, focus group discussion and observation. Secondary information was obtained through review of literature from published and unpublished documents: reports, newspapers, textbooks, journals etc. Seaweed farming was seen to be the dominant economic activity in these villages followed by fishing, then small-scale business. The income accrued from seaweed sales enabled farmers to meet basic needs, education costs, healthy expenses and other miscellaneous costs. People perceived poverty as a multidimensional phenomenon, comprising of having no assets, failure to get basic needs, poor health, and physical disability, etc. It was noted that the majority of seaweed farmers were women, most of whom remain poor due to low price for seaweed and other factors. Seaweed farming was found to have some economic and social advantages to these communities hence it was recommended, amongst others, that people of coastal communities should practice seaweed farming and take advantage of its benefits.
Available in print form, East Africana Collection, Dr. Wilbert Chagula Library, Class mark (THS EAF SH390.A15M26)
Seaweed, Poverty, Farming
Mboya, S.Z (2005) The role of seaweed farming in poverty alleviation in Tanzania, Master dissertation, University of Dar es Salaam. Dar es Salaam.