On the grounds of the Out-Growers HUB in the city of Tanga, there used to be two old trees towering in the out side yard. The two beautiful trees created shadow and would keep the temperatures in the yard down during the hot summer months. In February often reaching up to 35° C. Judging by the size these trees have been growing tall in this spot for many years. They might have lived through the abolishment of slavery in Tanzania and the great prosperous times of Tanga past.
One day, while Out-Growers were preparing to buy the plot to set up facilities, the local care takers began cutting down the trees, branch by branch. The wood was sold as input to charcoal production and the leaves burnt. In Tanzania it is not uncommon to neglect the value of natural resources.
This is just one example of how long-term planning is disregarded for the sake of a quick and easy income opportunity by people in urgent need of income. This is important for Out-Growers to recognise when establishing sustainable relations with farmers who will more than often be confronted with a situation where the short term solution will be tempting.
Part of the assistance that Out-Growers will provide to farmer clubs will be focused on financial literacy to understand the long term benefits of investments, and the setup of savings and loans groups, that enable the farmers to borrow cash throughout the year, should any urgent needs arise. This means that every Out-Grower farmer will have money to send their children to school when needed, and have a long term plan for increasing income continuously year for year.