BAMBOO WINE BUSINESS AND RURAL LIVELIHOOD OF SONGEA DISTRICT, TANZANIA

Michael John Haule

Abstract


This paper presents the impact of bamboo wine business on improvement of rural household income and livelihoods in Songea district, Tanzania. The area is largely rural, with 91 percent dominated by subsistence farming. It is the only area of Tanzania growing Oxytenathera Braunii bamboo species which produces bamboo wine. 

The study adopted both quantitative and qualitative methods. A survey was conducted in 50 households using semi-structured questionnaires. Participatory Rural Appraisal (PRA) involving 10 participants was conducted for detailed information.

 An appreciable contribution of bamboo wine to household income, and which is inversely proportional to variations in production levels was observed. Bamboo wine prices conceded with the law of “demand and supply”. Bamboo wine business was noted to improve livelihoods through utilization of the income generated in the acquisition of basic items and services such as shelter, school fees, food stuffs, bicycles and motor cycles. Despite the noted contribution, the crop was not a focus of the Agricultural Extension Service (AES), hence undermining its role.

We recommend that bamboo wine business be improved through AES, which is critical for improved bamboo wine productivity; storage and processing for expanded market and higher profitability.

Keywords


Bamboo wine, Household income and rural livelihood

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