The economy of Tanzania was very low in that it resulted in the use of roads to connect from the port of Dar-es-Salaam to the mainland. The Agrarian economy highly influenced the conditions of the roads. In other words, the Tanzanian roads hindered the expansion of peanut agricultural farming in the southern parts of Tanzania. The increased cost of transportation affected the prices of consumable commodities, creating a high barrier for peanuts and other food production. The local people of Tanzania are peasant farmers hence they never had the economic capability of producing large quantities of agricultural products. The English, under the leadership of Wakefield, wanted large-scale production of peanuts but faced difficulties due to the poor economic status of the local people (Esselborn 59).
We will write a custom Essay on British Growing Peanuts in Tanzania specifically for you
301 certified writers online
On the other hand, the economic status of the English territories was facing a deficit of vegetable oil due to rationing after World War II (Rizzo 207). The English territories were experiencing a high shortage of consumable goods, and the English did not want any opposition from the local people in Tanzania in regard to the growing of peanuts. According to Rizzo (211), the Tanzania groundnut project faced difficulties and challenges from the start until its cancellation. The poor economy of Tanzania made the local people form a trade union to fight for higher wages and more food for the employees in the peanut scheme project (Esselborn 65). The union organized a series of strikes that slowed down the progression of the peanut project. The Wakefield team aimed at solving the vegetable oil problem in English countries, and raising the economic status of Tanzania local people through the forceful implementation of the westernized methods of farming (Esselborn 74).
The implementation of the peanut scheme was a source of political rivalry between the managers of the peanut scheme and the colonial state in Tanzania. In the beginning, the managers of the scheme were after conducting a study on the reasons for the increasing population of the local people and a shortage of food supply (Esselborn 86). Later in the study, the managers of the scheme forcefully recruited local people in the peanut lands using military force that was against the colonial administrators of Tanzania. The increasing demand for the labor market resulted in a high confrontation between the colonial administrators and the managers of the peanut scheme. The issue had been predicted by the Tanzanian colonial administration even before the peanut scheme began. The Tanzanian administrators were unsympathetic about the labor demands of the scheme contributing toward the failure of the peanut scheme (Rizzo 221).
The new political system focused on the ecological limits not caring about the aftermath of the local people’s land (Esselborn 64). The space of cultivation was not enough, and the managers of the scheme resulted in consulting the Tanzanian administrators for extra land that resulted in political debates. The Tanzanian administrators gave misleading information to the local people that the peanut scheme was after the English benefits and not improving the lifestyle of the Tanzanians. In addition, the colonial administrators of Tanzania incited the local people to oppose the cultivation of peanuts due to massive destruction of the ancestral worship sites (Rizzo 227). The unfolding events resulted in the loss of connection between the locals, colonial administrators of Tanzania, and managers of the peanut scheme. The colonial administrators of Tanzania made the peanut project to be a political point for an easy colonization of the Tanzanian residents (Esselborn 88).
Esselborn, Stefan. Environment, Memory, and the Groundnut Scheme: Britain’s Largest Colonial Agricultural Development Project and Its Global legacy. Global Environment 11 (2013): 58-93. Print. Web.
Rizzo, Matteo. “What was left of the groundnut scheme? Development disaster and labour market in Southern Tanganyika 1946–1952.” Journal of Agrarian Change 6.2 (2006): 205-238. Print. Web.