President Yoweri Museveni has commissioned Post-Harvest Facilities and Equipment for Farmer Organizations supported through the Agriculture Cluster Development Project (ACDP).
During the event which took place at the Referral Agricultural Mechanization Centre in Namalere, Wakiso District, selected farmers from different Farmer Organizations received consignments of large scale coffee hullers, rice and maize milling machines, threshers, dryers, generators and bean cleaning machines. These are additions to the facilities that have been set up in project districts across Uganda.
The value addition equipment and grants to farmers , President Museveni said , was aimed at reminding farmers that agriculture is a business and they should earn from it. All the equipment was made in Uganda by local companies including Musa Body limited in Katwe.
“I am happy that we are moving in the right direction as far as transforming Agriculture from subsistence to commercial is concerned. We started the Palm oil project in Kalangala. The people on the island have become very rich now because of that project.
We are building for you a leather processing plant at Kawumu and we are also going to put up an industry to make paper out of banana fibers. This is because we are spending about $300m to import pape,” Museveni stated .
The President however ,warned the people of NAADs and the Ministry of Agriculture not to give farmers fake imported seeds. “We have very good local seeds.
For months now, I have boycotted onions because we no longer have ‘serious onions’. We are losing our original seeds with real flavor like onions, tomatoes ,oranges, and others just because some outsiders said we should lose them. They must be restored,” Museveni said in an angry tone.
The Agriculture Cluster Development Project (ACDP) is a project supported by the World Bank with the overall objective of raising on-farm productivity, production and marketable volumes of 5 crops which are Maize, Beans, Rice, Cassava and Coffee in 57 Districts categorized in 12 Geographical Clusters (Grouping of Districts by commodity).
One of the approaches used to increase value addition, bulking, proper storage and collective marketing (post-harvest processes) is through Matching Grant support.
Status of the Matching Grants provided to Farmer Organizations
To date, a total of 193 Grant Agreements have been signed with 118 from the first batch and 75 from the second batch of applicants.
First Batch of Matching Grant Beneficiaries
Under the first batch, 118 grant agreements have been signed with a total grant amount of UGX 34.8 Billion. Government Contribution is UGX 23.5 billion and of this, UGX 21.7 billion has been disbursed to one hundred and eleven grantees as of September 30, 2020.
- Over 90 construction sites for storage and machinery shelter have also been completed.
- About 50 sets of Farm equipment (coffee hullers, rice/ maize milling machines, threshers, dryers, generators, bean cleaners) have been completed and are ready for delivery.
The second Batch of Matching Grant Beneficiaries
Under the second batch, 75 grant agreements have been signed with total grant value of UGX 28 billion, where Government will contribute UGX 18.1 billion and beneficiaries will contribute UGX 9.2 billion. The disbursement to these beneficiaries will commence in the month of October 2020.
The Third Batch of Matching Grant Beneficiaries
Under the third batch, the Grants Management Committee has approved over 378 business plans. These are currently being assessed by the Ministry and grant award of about UGX 42 billion will be award to selected beneficiaries.
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