Ayubu Juma Makasi (53) from Tanga (Lushoto) is a vegetable farmer of tomato, squash, broccoli, red cabbage and lettuce. He started farming in 1985 after quitting his welding job.
He heard about the SEVIA extension officer (Adam Lazaro) doing a good job for the first time in 2015. Although his expectations were not attained from the first tomato demo, he believed that the next season would bring good results, due to the support and guidance provided by Adam Lazaro. And it did: “The second tomato demo was successful, I was able to harvest 80% of the entire demo”, he said.
Ayubu Makasi includes proper application of fertilizer as well as pest and diseases control measures to the rest of his crops. Following the outcomes from SEVIA demos he switched to using hybrid seeds.
“The use of hybrid seeds has completely changed my market approach”, he said. Previously he was selling his produce in local markets in Lushoto, but since he started working with SEVIA and after some market research, he has been transporting his high quality vegetables to Dar es Salaam. “I am getting good market prices because I am not using middlemen to sell my produce. I am happy to be different from other farmers”, he stated. “With the income I am getting from a more lucrative market in Dar, I am buying inputs to provide other farmers as loans. I get repaid through a profit sharing and so I have extra income from farming, but indirectly. That makes me a happy farmer. ”