The functions of the Trading Division began with the Association’s establishment in 1935. Focused on providing farmers with a competitive and reliable source of high quality agricultural inputs, the idea of a one-stop shop for farmers was born out of its commitment to ensuring success for its Members and the wider farming community. Over many years TFA operated profitably with impressive turnover, retained profits and substantial annual bonus payments to its Members.
TFA experienced great difficulties under the socialist regime when most of its operations were taken over by the State. In the late 1980’s, after TFA had adjusted itself to the new environment the Tanzanian Government started to privatise most of its commercial activities. In the 1990’s the country experienced massive changes in farming, commercial, social, political and other economic activities. These posed enormous challenges to TFA as it was overwhelmed by a flood of new competition in the liberalised economy. In fact the country witnessed the collapse of several large commercial institutions which could not withstand the changed business climate.
The new millennium has heralded a new management approach and a commitment to provide tangible benefits to Members and farmers as a whole. The new Corporate Strategic Plan approved by TFA’s Board in October 2007 sets out a path for major growth of the Trading Division that builds on its good reputation and strong foundations:
- A widely recognized and respected organisation that is owned by Tanzanians and has strong links to Tanzania’s agricultural heritage,
- A reliable supplier of quality farming inputs with a nation-wide network of outlets,
- Public as well as Government confidence in TFA’s support and services to farmers and the agri-business community,
- Strong linkage between farm input producers and farmers.
Some of the key benefits for TFA’s Members are:
- Discounts on all products purchased from TFA outlets,
- Dividends on profits generated by the Association,
- Free delivery to farm for qualifying purchases,
- Farm technical advisory services,
- Advocacy for farmers.