Deadly cotton pest attacks Luuka farms
Posted Monday, January 6 2014 at 02:00
Farmers lack appropriate pesticides to apply as hundreds of acres of the cash crop wither.
A team from the Cotton Development Organisation (CDO) has pitched camp in Luuka District after a pest known as the Cotton Stainer attacked cotton fields in the district, causing the withering of hundreds of acres of the cash crop.
The team led by CDO’s Seed Inspector Douglous Bhosopo toured farms in Ikumbya Sub-county on Friday and trained farmers in pest control. “It attacks the barrows of the plant and in every 10 days it produces 300 siblings. It should be sprayed very fast,” Mr Bhosopo told farmers at Bugambo Village where it was also discovered that farmers had applied wrong pesticides leading to the destruction of more than two acres of the crop.
Farmers complained about what they described as low prices for the produce and called on the cotton body to help address the matter. They claimed they incur high costs during cultivation, harvesting and post-harvest management.
While Mr Bhosopo said prices are determined by the world market, CDO’s field assistant in-charge of Busoga Region Charles Betanswa, said the government was to start giving farmers loans in form of seeds, ox ploughs and extension services in order to revive and boost cotton production.