The Netherlands has a leading position in the world in the potato chain: in production, processing and trade. It is important to secure this position for the future. That is part of the reason why a large number of companies in the potato chain has unified themselves in Holland Innovative Potato (HIP) consortium and working with Ministry of Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality to set up a substantial public private research program for the potato sector.
The purpose of the project is to set-up a Center for Development of Potato industry (CDPIT) in Tanzania. The development of the potato value chain in Tanzania is in its infancy. However there is a vast potential for potato cultivation and a quickly increasing market. Dutch companies are interested to work with this potential.
The Center focusses on optimizing the productivity and quality of the potato crop and developing the private sector along the value chain with specific focus on establishing business relations between The Netherlands and Tanzania. The Center will support Dutch and Tanzanian business partners that want to introduce, test and develop new approaches and technology in the Tanzanian context. In parallel, the Center works on the professionalization of the potato cultivation by investing in the lead farms and the professionals that are active in the field supporting and guiding farmers.
The half year period of 2017 was used to explore the wishes and business opportunities of the Dutch partners as basis for a more detailed workplan, to start with the transformation of the Letter of Intent into a Memorandum of Understanding, the erection of a Tanzanian company as legal entity to host the Tanzanian implementation team, to explore a suitable physical place for the center and its related experimental/demonstration fields, and to support the Dutch seed potato companies to apply for the NPT trials of 2018 (variety testing).