Current Status and Prospects of Improving Sunflower Production in Tanzania Through Intercropping with Sunn Hemp
Chappa, Luciana R.
Gitari, Harun I.
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This paper highlights the importance of sunflower, and its current status, giving the prospects of improving its production through intercropping it with sunn hemp legume. The review focuses on Tanzania, where smallholder farmers mainly produce sunflower as a cash crop and a source of vegetable oil. The crop’s production is threatened by decreased soil fertility, attack by pests and disease, limited rainfall, and the high cost of inputs like fertilizers and chemicals. This calls for adopting farming systems that can meet the increasing demand for sunflowers. Intercropping sunflower with a legume such as sunn hemp is an environmentally friendly technique for increasing and sustaining the productivity of the farmland. HIGHLIGHTS m Sunflower is a critical raw material in producing edible vegetable oil, as biodiesels, cosmetics, lubricants, paints, and drugs, besides being a source of livestock feeds. m Factors affecting sunflower production include decreased soil fertility, attack by pests and disease, inadequate rainfall, and high cost of inputs such as fertilizers. m Integrating sunn hemp into sunflower cropping systems can boost crop production while contributing to soil fertility.