Tanzania has one of the most competitive cotton sectors in Africa with dozens of ginners offering seed and pesticides in exchange for exclusive purchase rights over the cotton crop. Some use a decentralized system and subcontract agents in villages to distribute inputs and gather the harvest. Default rates are very high and have been threatening to undermine contract farming in some districts.
We are working with S&C Ginning in Bunda District to evaluate the inclusion of hybrid maize seed distribution alongside cotton. In January 2014, hybrid maize seeds were randomly assigned to 340 HHs contracted by S&C Ginning in Bunda. A further 366 HHs contracted by S&C Ginning are acting as the comparison group. Fieldwork took place in December 2014.