Sustainable Agriculture Tanzania (SAT) creates linkages between farmers, educators, researchers and government, to generate and inspire, locally-relevant knowledge in agroecology. Since 2011, SAT has brought only in Morogoro over 2000 small-scale farmers working together into the agroecological farming movement by demonstrating and practicing agroecological principles in 70 groups from 50 villages using farmer field schools. This community, with its experiences, is the Core-Network that builds the foundation of SAT’s Innovation Platform. Through using an approach which acknowledges the experience and knowledge of farmers, SAT does not only give inputs but receives as well information. This gained agroecological knowledge is incubated and refined. On this platform, all gained experiences from the field are made accessible to a national community of more than 50,000 farmers, public and private stakeholders. SAT achieves this outreach with operating a Farmer Training Centre (FTC) which is based on an 80ha demonstration farm. Close to becoming financially self-sustained, FTC has hosted since 2013 more than 1,600 farmers, extension officers and youths from all over East Africa. In addition, SAT co-publishes the monthly Farmer Magazine “Mkulima Mbunifu” which provides technical guidance for agroecological farming with reaching up to 45.000 farmers. These facilities are the vehicles to further disseminate the agroecological methods in Tanzania and even outside the country.
To increase the knowledge production SAT collaborates with universities to link young researchers with the farming communities.
SAT’s work within the Core-Farmer-Network is based on a holistic approach. Different modules are facilitated which cover agroecology in all its facets. Farmers receive in the villages facilitation on agriculture, life skills, saving and lending, entrepreneurship and are even accompanied through organic certification by using a Participatory Guarantee System. SAT follows a social-entrepreneur philosophy. It provides high-quality products which are unique, disseminates them through appropriate marketing and uses a strong financial planning and control.
A core SAT methodology is the Farmer-to-Farmer (F2F) approach, where adopters receive
additional training in leadership, facilitation and networking. The F2F approach has been
already adopted by other organisations which demonstrates its replicability.