Digital oppdragsrapport 14.12.23: Distillation system for producing wood vinegar in Tanzania
Project and background:
With the Stromme Foundation as the lead agency, the Enhanced Livelihoods through Commercial Agricultural Production (ELCAP) project is implemented by a consortium of Tanzanian and Norwegian public and private partners. The goal of the project is to sustainably improve the livelihoods of 6,000 smallholder farmers, their households and other value-chain stakeholders. ELCAP will achieve the project goal through two outcomes; improve the production, productivity and quality of agricultural products for smallholder farmers, and increase smallholder farmers’ access to market linkages and the private sector.
The sub-region has unfortunately faced significant challenges as various crops have been severely affected by infestations of the African bollworm and the Fall Armyworm. The use of pesticides continues to be a challenge as the cost of purchasing pesticides remains prohibitively high for many farmers, limiting their accessibility. Also, chemical pesticides are abrasive to biodiversity. Finding affordable, environmentally conscious, and sustainable solutions to common pests is crucial for the sustainability of the project.
In an effort to provide cost-effective alternatives to chemical pesticides, smallholder farmers can benefit from the production of wood vinegar, scientifically proven by The Norwegian Geotechnical Institute (NGI) to be a more effective and natural pesticide against common pests like the African bollworm and Fall Armyworm. By distilling wood vinegar, farmers can create their own pesticide solution, reducing their reliance on expensive chemical pesticides. This not only helps in pest control but also presents an opportunity to establish an additional value chain for smallholder farmers, potentially increasing their overall revenue.
The two EWB volunteer engineers Jan Olav and Shara were tasked with designing and constructing a wood vinegar distillation system that can be built with local resources by the target group. In October they travelled to Singida, Tanzania, to construct the system on-site, and conduct training for SF’s local partners, and ELCAP lead farmers on the construction and use of the distillation system.
They will present their work and recommendations, and we have set aside time for Q&A.