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Trianon Investment: a new opportunity for Tanzanian spices

Additionally, there is the difficulty of accessing financing, often caused by very high interest rates on credit, which makes it difficult to upgrade businesses and advance payments to farmers.

MARKUP interventions in Tanzania, implemented by the International Trade Centre (ITC), focus on the huge potential this country has in spices production, especially of cinnamon. The support includes training courses on the improvement of agricultural practices such as the preparation of nurseries, cutting of trees, scraping the bark and quilling. Small and medium companies are exposed to modern value addition and processing technologies and skills such as oil distillation, making tea bag cuts or cinnamon rolling. Training also includes familiarisation with international standards and the facilitation of linkages with international buyers and investors.

 MARKUP, through ITC interventions, supported Companero Farmers, a Tanzanian spices exporter, to participate in events in Europe such as the European Spices Association (ESA) General Assembly, the Food and Ingredients Trade Fair in Paris and visits to spices factories in Rotterdam. Trianon Investments was formed as a result of this exposure. It is a joint venture between Companero Farmers, represented by Mr. Edward Rukaka, chairperson of the Tanzania Spice Association (TASPA) and Bapa Trading, a Netherlands spices company represented by Mr. Paul de Rooij, the president of the Dutch Spices Association.

Trianon Investments was officially registered on the 22nd of November 2019. The company aims to achieve 800,000 USD in revenues in 2020 and 2 million USD in revenues by 2022 from its sales.

Co-founder Mr. Edward Rukaka said, “Trianon Investments stands for a dream to pioneer new techniques to improve the quality of Tanzanian spices and make them globally renowned and exportable throughout the world. Moreover, the dream is to create positive impact for the communities here in Tanzania and the industry as a whole”.

The Dutch investor has mobilised 100,000 USD to upgrade the infrastructure of the warehouse and purchase equipment for processing spices, as well as additional working capital to get the business started. January was a trial month for the processing of green cardamom, cinnamon scraping and ginger slicing and drying, and the company will be ready for business for the cardamom season in February 2020.

The founders shared that the support from the MARKUP team was fundamental to enable Trianon to become a world-class spice processing company and at the same time contribute to improving the livelihood of smallholder farmers in Tanzania. Rooij stated, “I am very thankful to MARKUP for showing me the potential of Tanzanian spices and introducing me to Edward Rukaka. Being a part of the project gives me confidence to embark on this new adventure in a foreign country.”

The Trianon Factory is situated in Lusanga village near Muheza in Tanga Region. We will announce the time of the official opening soon.