Wednesday October 29 2014

Government boosts cassava production in Bunyoro

By George Muzoora

The government in partnership with UK and China has introduced a project aimed at promoting cassava productivity and value addition in Bunyoro sub-region.

The two-year project, code-named Agricultural Technology Transfer on Cassava (AGRIT), is to be piloted in Masindi, Kiryandongo, Buliisa, Hoima and Kibaale districts. While UK is funding the project, China has dedicated its technical expertise to ensure that the project succeeds.

Help yields
Blasto Byabakama, district production officer, Masindi, said that although Uganda is among the leading cassava producing countries in the world, its farmers get much low yields from cassava gardens compared to famers in other countries like China.

He noted that the highest yield from one acre of cassava by Ugandan farmers is four tonnes yet their Chinese counterparts can harvest up to 40 tonnes from one acre. “I am optimistic that this project will help our farmers reap big from cassava production,” he said.

Hands-on
According to Byabakama, under the pilot project, each district in Bunyoro will have 10 groups with 25 people each and every member in a group must be able to plant at least two acres of cassava.
On top of individual benefits, he added that each group must have 12 acres of land, which will be used as multiplication blocks.

“Throughout this process, the Chinese experts will give hands-on training to cassava farmers and all the activities will be mechanised,” he said. China is the leading cassava producer in the world.

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