Caption: Inside the processing centre at Masindi District during the test operation.
After 3 years of formulating an Agro Processing and Marketing Strategy in Uganda, KOICA and the Ministry are pleased with the successful launch of two pilot/demonstration centers for maize in Masindi District and rice for Jinja district processing in Uganda. The two districts selected to house the facilities are major producing districts of the selected crops.
The launching ceremonies were graced by H.E. the Ambassador of the Republic of Korea to Uganda, H.E. PARK, Jongdae and the Minister of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries of the Republic of Uganda, Hon. Vincent Ssempijja Bamulangaki.
The initial investiment for the entire project is Two million Five hundred Thousand US Dollars only ($2.5m) to facilitate the increase of farmers’ income through expansion of agricultural processing and marketing systems and likewise boost the rural employment that will be as a result of increased demand for processed agricultural products.
To respond to the growing need of reducing post harvest losses and boosting farmers’ income, the Government of Republic of Korea and Uganda decided to set up an Agro Processing Strategy that could address such problems. The process of executing the project involved the development of the Agro Processing and Marketing Strategy, capacity building of beneficiaries and project implementation personnel as well as physical investment in agro processing and post harvest technologies.
As a prerequisite to Uganda’s development, both governments see it as a need to increase investment in the agro processing because of the comparative advantage it brings forward. It is also believed that the establishment of the two Pilot/ demonstration centres will improve access to markets and serve as models for influencing the establishment of similar centers in other districts.
Other strategic interventions in the future include dispatch a team of Korean Experts in agricultural technology to provide technical advice for agro processing in Uganda, capacity improvement programs for Ugandan personnel both in Korea and Uganda to enable acquisition of technical knowledge and experience of agro processing and marketing and conducting technical workshops to share and transfer the technical knowledge of postharvest quality management, postharvest loss reduction.
The said launching ceremonies are taking place on the October 26 and 27 of 2016 for Masindi District and Jinja District respectively.