In Tanzania, a country of 57 million people, 58 percent of children under five and 45 percent of women aged 15 to 49 are anaemic, while 36 percent of women aged 15 to 49 are deficient in vitamin A.


Penina Muoki

The multicountry Commercialisation of Biofortified Crops (CBC) Programme is being implemented in Tanzania by HarvestPlus and the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition. In Tanzania, the project is commercialising maize and beans crops, biofortified with vitamin A and iron respectively (see programme description below). 

Vitamin A-biofortified maize has great potential to address vitamin A deficiency, given that maize is a widely consumed staple by nearly 90 percent of the population. The commercialisation of iron beans presents an opportunity to help address iron deficiency, especially among under-five children, adolescent girls, and expectant mothers, as more than 75 percent of households in Tanzania depend on beans for daily subsistence. 

Biofortified Crops in Tanzania*

Iron Bean

Year of First Release:
Number of Varieties Released
to Date: 6
Vitamin A Maize

Vitamin A Maize

Year of First Release:
Number of Varieties Released
to Date: 2

Vitamin A Orange Sweet Potato

Year of First Release:
Number of Varieties Released
to Date: 5

*Includes varieties shown to meet HarvestPlus standards. Other varieties may be available in the country.

Varieties Released Database

This searchable database provides information on all biofortified crops variety releases by country.

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Commercialisation of Biofortified Crops (CBC) Program (2018-2022)

The CBC programme is catalyzing commercial markets for biofortified seeds, grains, and food products in Tanzania, with country partners on a value chain approach to creating sustainable commercial pathways for biofortification. Existing value chains for comparable non-biofortified staple crops and foods are leveraged, and any gaps or barriers to producing or trading biofortified versions are identified and addressed. The CBC programme is focusing on high iron beans and vitamin A maize, and aims to improve access to inputs and markets for biofortified seeds and food products, generate demand for the nutrient-rich staple crops.

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Biofortification news in Tanzania

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Cross-posted from Vitamin A deficiency is considered a major public health problem in Tanzania affecting over 30 percent of the population, mostly children in preschool and women of reproductive age.  It can result in morbidity, loss of vision or blindness and even death. Provitamin A maize (PVA) is a special type of biofortified maize […]

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