Japhet Hasunga, the Minister for Agriculture, said the crackdown followed complaints from the public that traders sold the commodity higher than the indicative price set by the government.
“The crackdown will target one shop after another and traders who are found for hiking price of sugar will face the full force of the law,” said Hasunga.
“If there are traders who think the crackdown is a joke, let them continue selling the commodity at a high price. They should not blame anyone when they face the music,” added the minister.
On April 24, the government announced indicative price of the commodity, which is 2,600 Tanzanian shillings (about 1.12 U.S. dollars) a kilogram, after sugar price had gone up.
The rise in sugar price was allegedly attributed to traders who had hoarded the commodity in warehouses to create an artificial shortage.
Hasunga said Tanzania’s sugar demand stood at 470,000 tons a year, while the country’s five sugar processing factories had the capacity of producing 378,000 tons in 2019.