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I 5 PERFORMANCE OF AGRICULTURE In order to evaluate the performance of the Tanzanian economy before and after adjustment, a correct assessmen t o f agricultura l growt h is crucial give n th e large share of agriculture in GDP. Ever since the mid-1970s, Tanzania's agricultural sector has—according t o official estimates—grow n a t rates above thos e of the nonagricultural sector and has increased its share in theGDP at the expense of the nonagricultural sectors (see Tables 2 and 9). Such a pattern runs counter to wha t i s usuall y considere d a "normal " pattern o f economi c growth . Thi s atypical growt h o f th e agricultura l secto r i s attribute d t o increase s i n th e production of food crops , since stagnation has characterized the performanc e of export crops. In this chapter we start with a brief overview of the changes in the institutional setting of agriculture over the last three decades. We then present an analysis of the trend s i n foo d an d expor t cro p productio n an d sho w tha t th e clai m o f consistent expansion in food crop production is not consistent with other types of information. We also show that agrarian structure and technology seem to have stayed remarkably constant during the period of institutional upheaval and crisis. Finally, although we will argue that agricultural producers were clearly affecte d negatively b y th e stagnatio n an d deterioration o f Tanzania' s econom y befor e 116 Performance of Agriculture11 7 adjustment, some of the main potential benefits of structural adjustment were not effectively transmitted to the majority of agricultural producers. THE INSTITUTIONAL SETTING Tanzania's agricultural sector performed remarkably well in the 1950s and the early 1960s . However , th e adven t o f a state-controlle d econom y afte r th e Arusha declaration in 1967 created an environment that was generally repressive for agriculture. The socialist policies adopted turned against private production and marketing of export crops and substituted for them state farms and monopsonistic marketing boards. The inefficient operation of the various agricultural parastatals virtually decimated Tanzania's export crop sector. Given that agricultural exports accounted for approximately 8 0 percent of total exports , the collapse of the export crop sector can be seen as amajor endogenous cause of the macroeconomic crisis of the early 1980s. Tanzania's peasant farm sector (as opposed to estate plantation and other large-scale operations ) provides around 85 percent or more of the followin g major export crops: coffee, cotton, cashews, tobacco, and pyrethrum. Additionally , peasant farms are responsible for approximately 25 percent of tea production , 50 percent of the officially markete d rice production, and virtually all of the legally marketed maize production. During the 1950s and 1960s, this peasant sector expanded its share in agricultural exports considerably and dominated the country's export performance (World Bank 1983). However, the existence of a considerable numbe r o f plantation s an d large-scale far m enterprise s give s Tanzania a diverse mix of agricultural producers. This typical mix of peasant and estate farming was basically already in place by the end of German colonial rule. At independence, the marketing structure was characterized by acombination of private traders and a strongly emerging cooperative structure, much as had been the case earlie r in the century. Afte r independence , th e "improvement approach," as defined in the First Five-Year Plan of the newly independent state, strongly emphasized the cooperative movement, probably partially because it was see n a s an appropriate countervailin g powe r against "non-African" elements , namely, Tanzanians of Indian and Arab origin. Partly as a result of high prices during the drought of the 1960/61 season, the government decreed in 1962 the Agricultural Products Control and Marketing Act, which defined what became known as the three-tier single-channel marketing system. At the apex level, crop-specific marketing boards were established, which were responsible for the final sale of agricultural produce. The marketing boards bought from regional cooperative unions, who i n tur n were supplie d b y primary cooperatives or 118 Alexander H.Sarris and Rogier van den Brink directly by private producers. Crops falling under this regime had their prices set by th e governmen t an d wer e calle d "scheduled " crops. They...

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Additional Information

ISBN
9780814741467
Related ISBN
9780814779828
MARC Record
OCLC
782877969
Pages
224
Launched on MUSE
2012-08-07
Language
English
Open Access
No
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