Tanzania — The Kilombero Valley teak Company (KVTC) has continued to suffer losses due to frequent burning of its farms. The incidents have been increasing each year despite appeals and awareness education programmes for villagers surrounding the farms on how to control bush fires.
Speaking at a recent meeting that brought together representatives from 20 villages, which cultivate teak near KVTC estates, the company community manager, Mr Kennedy Haule, said that in 2011 some 2,734 hectares including 1,418.3 hectares of teak farms were destroyed by fires.
Mr Haule said that incidents of fire in bushes and teak farms owned by the company were many last year compared to previous years. In 2008 for instance, only 563.88 hectares of teak farms were burnt, he said, adding that bush fires are caused by villagers who prepare their farms by setting them ablaze and failing to control the inferno. Fishermen camps and honey harvesters are among those who cause bush fires, which affect our farms, he said.