Existing tea seedlings stocks


Existing tea seedlings stocks

These guidelines are for tea seedlings that were in nurseries between August 2016 when nurseries were verified and December 2016 when the Honorable Minister of Agriculture Animal Industry and Fisheries issued a general circular to districts on guidelines for production, procurement and distribution of tea seedlings.

  • MAAIF and NAADS in collaboration with the respective District Local Governments shall urgently establish the existing tea seedlings stocks with nursery operators using a standard verification form.
  • Nursery operators shall carry out root pruning of tea seedlings to minimize mortality in gardens. Acceptable seedlings for root pruning shall not be more than 24 months old.
  • All tea seedlings due for pre-planting verification shall not be under shade as proof of being in the final stages of hardening.
  • The nursery operators shall cut back the shoots of the overgrown tea seedlings in the nurseries to bring them back to a height of 15-20cm as they wait to supply.
  • The District Local Governments and tea farmers’ association under the guidance of MAAIF and NAADS, shall urgently establish the demand (readily available land and willing farmers to plant tea) for tea seedlings in the current and next planting seasons.
  • Basing on established available tea demand from DLGs; MAAIF in collaboration with NAADS and MoFPED will solicit the funds to procure the tea seedlings.
  • The existing tea seedlings stock shall be procured by the respective procurement entities following the PPDA guidelines.
  • To minimize transport costs and stressed tea seedlings to the extent possible, tea seedlings will be procured from the respective beneficiary districts.
  • In cases where there are excess tea seedlings than demanded by the farmers in that district, the excess tea seedlings shall be procured for farmers in other seedling deficient districts preferably within the same sub-region without compromising the quality of the seedlings.
  • The beneficiary DLGs shall organize pre-distribution meetings with the earmarked suppliers and farmer representatives to harmonize on delivery and distribution arrangements.
  • The existing stock shall be largely used for gap filling to fully establish the existing gardens for consolidation and concentration.
  • Tea seedlings shall be transported and delivered to nearest access point to beneficiary farmers.
  • MAAIF/NAADS and DLGs shall advise the nursery operators to momentarily suspend the establishment of new nurseries until the existing stock is handled and future demand established.
  • Given that tea seedlings require a minimum of two months of rains for proper establishment, farmers shall prepare their gardens (clear bush and dig holes) at least two weeks before receiving seedlings.
  • MAAIF, NAADS and DLGS shall carry out verification of tea seedlings within nurseries before supplies for quality assurance.

Tea Mother Gardens and Nursery Operations in the Country

  • MAAIF shall carry out suitability assessments for introduction of tea in an area before investment decisions are made.
  • The DLGs shall under the guidance of MAAIF, map out suitable tea growing areas where locally based nurseries will be established.
  • MAAIF shall put in place mechanisms for identification, registration, and certification of tea nurseries and nursery operations.
  • MAAIF and DLGs shall register and regulate all tea nursery operators in the districts.
  • MAAIF, NAADS, DLGs shall orient and train nursery operators on tea nursery management.
  • The nursery operators will establish the tea nurseries under technical guidance of the DAOs. The source of the planting materials (clones and bushes) must be from certified mother gardens and the nursery operators must show proof.
  • MAAIF shall carry out registration and coding of all tea mother gardens in the country for ease of traceability.
  • MAAIF/NARO in collaboration with UTA shall identify suitable tea clones for multiplication.
  • MAAIF shall regularly backstop the DAOs in conducting routine inspections and supervision of mother gardens and nurseries.
  • All tea planting materials shall be subjected to a joint pre-delivery verification by a technical team from MAAIF, NAADS, OWC, DLGs, UTA, a representative of tea nursery operators, farmers and other key stakeholders/actors in tea value chain.
  • MAAIF in collaboration with other relevant agencies (public or private), shall build technical and institutional capacity of agricultural extension service providers and farmer associations in all tea growing areas to enable them effectively handle all aspects of the tea value chain.
  • MAAIF shall ensure that DLGs are adequately guided and facilitated to deliver tea extension services.
  • Each DLG shall designate a Tea Subject Matter Specialist who shall be retooled by MAAIF.
  • Each DLG shall establish farmer owned demonstration gardens in new areas where tea is being promoted under the guidance of MAAIF.
  • MAAIF/NAADs shall guide respective DLGs to regulate tea nursery establishment, procurement and payments.
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