Zanzibar Horticulture Programme

About the Programme

The objective of the Zanzibar Horticulture programme, also known as the Mbogamboga programme, is to change the lives of smallholder farmers through integrated horticulture farming, where farmers integrate different types of plants in one area for optimum utilization and management of available resources. The ultimate aim is to enable the farmers to benefit from the tourism value chain in Zanzibar.

The programme strengthens the production capacity of existing smallholder farmer groups to help them move from micro entities to small-scale commercial enterprises. We train farmers on good agricultural practices in vegetable and fruit farming to help them improve the quality of their crops and the amount of their yield. Specifically, the training focuses on crop management, irrigation methods and soil conservation, pest and disease management, and food processing technologies like fruit solar dryers. In addition, we sensitizes farmers (and their spouses) on human rights and gender issues.

To help them capture benefits from the tourism industry, the programme links farmers to hotels where they can sell their produce. We also enhance the farmers’ skills on accessing different markets and setting up collection points for various actors in the tourism value chain.

The programme links farmers to financial institutions where they can acquire loans for various inputs like irrigation systems that enable them to maintain a regular supply of produce to hotels and the general community, particularly during the dry season.

Programme Results

The programme has positively changed the lives of vulnerable women and youth by facilitating them to be economically active. It has also made links with the government and other players, including the Zanzibar Association of Tourism Investors (ZATI) and UWAWIMA (Umoja wa Wakulima wa Mbogamboga na Matunda).


  • Over 4,500 women and youth have improved their production, thanks to training they received from the programme
  • 3,000 smallholder farmers have been linked to hotel markets in Zanzibar. These farmers are also leveraging financial services through microfinance institutions and the Belkin  Revolving Fund
  • 12 hotels are now buying vegetables from farmer groups created by the programme.
  • 75 farmer schools have been established which are providing hands on training to the 4,500 farmers. 16 farmer schools and farmer groups have registered as legal entities
  • 180 women have received loans from the Belkin Revolving Fund worth US$ 95,000 between 2013 and 2017. More women continue accessing loans from this revolving Fund.
  • 750 smallholder farmers are now turning farming into profitable businesses, thanks to the business management and entrepreneurial skills that they have acquired from the programme.
  • Women who have participated in the programme are gradually becoming leaders, decision-makers and are building their confidence to negotiate over economic resources and the use of earned income for the purpose of their own choices. Some women have become community leaders, holding positions like political party representative and Member of Parliament.

Programme Funders

The Zanzibar Horticulture programme is supported by the Belkin Revolving Fund. Previous supporters were the Gatsby Charitable Foundation and Ford Foundation.

Programme partners include the Zanzibar Association of Tourism Investors (ZATI) and UWAWIMA (Umoja wa Wakulima wa Mbogamboga na Matunda).