Of our trust 



The Agricultural Research and Extension Trust (ARET) is Malawi’s premier institution in tobacco research and technology dissemination. ARET was established on 1st September 1995 through an amalgamation of two institutions, Tobacco Research Institute of Malawi (TRIM) and the Estate Extension Service Trust (EEST), which separately provided research and extension services respectively. ARET was established with the mandate of developing and disseminating technologies in production of tobacco and other high value export crops. It took the form of a trust with

  • the Government of Malawi and the Tobacco Association of Malawi (TAMA) as trustors
  • TAMA, Ministry of Agriculture, Tobacco Processor Association and NASFAM as trustees and
  • the tobacco farmers as the beneficiaries

ARET’s operations are funded through a levy from tobacco farmers.

Our Mission

To promote sustainable production of high quality tobacco and other high value export agricultural crops for the realization of improved farm profits while at the same time conserving natural resources and protecting the environment

Our vision

To be the centre of excellence in tobacco research and technology dissemination


There is growing need for Malawi tobacco, like tobacco produced elsewhere, to fully comply with international standards. ARET’s mission and core activities respond to Global Tobacco Trade Requirements. ARET is taking an active role in ensuring that all tobacco in Malawi is produced in a compliant and sustainable manner by contributing to the development and implementation of a Supply Chain Due Diligence (SCDD) framework. Special attention is put to non-contracted growers cognizant of the fact that there are frameworks already catering for the growers under the Integrated Production System (IPS).

Consideration is made on three pillars of sustainability: Environmental, Social and Cooperate Governance (ESG) which are in line with the United Nations Guiding Principle on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs). Under guidance of these pillars ARET’s activities aim to address the following strategic issues in line with compliance:

  • Sustainable agriculture
  • Agricultural Labour Practices and Corporate Social Responsibility
  • Code of business conduct, grower traceability and information management


The first pillar anchoring the Malawi 2063 is enhancement of “Agricultural Productivity and Commercialization”. Subsequently the second goal in the vision aspires for “a strong and competitive manufacturing industry that is driven by a productive and commercially vibrant agriculture and mining sector”.  Additionally, the tenth goal aspires for “an environmentally sustainable economy”.

ARET through its mission aims to improve productivity and profitability in production of tobacco and other high value export crops. Consequently ARET’s core activities are guided by sustainability of tobacco production, productivity and profitability through commercialization.

ARET’s mission is cognizant of the need for “conserving natural resources and protecting the environment” to achieve sustainable production of tobacco and other high value crops. This drive is reflected in ARET’s core activities and outputs.

The ARET Mission also supports the realization of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).