A 4.5 Million Euro program, that will see small holder farmers use satellite data to improve production and marketing of three value chains – maize, soya beans and sesame, was Thursday launched by the Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA) in collaboration with 6 other partners, with support from the Dutch Ministry of foreign affairs.
October 22, 2015
Designed as a demand driven, Market-led, User owned ICT4Ag Enabled Information Service (MUIIS), the program seeks to strengthen information and communication technologies, and knowledge management (KM) capacities of grassroots farmers through providing satellite based timely, accurate information on crop management, in Uganda.
Speaking during the launch of the Program at Serena Hotel, Kampala, Dr Benjamin Kwasi Addom, the program coordinator of the Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation( ACP-EU-CTA) said the program is targeting over 4 million individual farmers organized in 500 cooperatives in Uganda.
“ This unique service that will benefit over 350,000 Ugandan farmers, will lead to improved user friendly of inputs including water, fertilizer, seeds and pesticides,” he said, adding, ”It will be a long time impact through decreased dependence on social assistance and improved sustainability in food production.”
Carol Kakooza, the Program Director Mercy Corps – one of the six partners said the program will improve self reliance of up to 800,000 farmers by supporting entrepreneurship, and promoting enabling environments.
The guest of Honour, Hon Mike Sebalu, Member of Parliament of East African Legislative Assembly, said the program will create sustainable business models for farmers.
“ With this support from the Netherlands space office, we envisage increase in food crop yield, increase in effective use of agricultural inputs, farmers income, trade, investment activities and capacity building for the disadvantaged,” Hon Sebalu said.
Also present at the launch were officials from National Information Technology Authority, Ministry of Agriculture and Ministry of Trade, among others.
The six partners of CTA are, Alliance for Green Revolution in Africa(AGRA), aWhere Inc, the East African farmers Federation (EAFF), EARS Earth Environment Monitoring (EARS-E2M), Tht Eleaf Competence Centre, and Mercy Corps Uganda.
by Linda Kabuzire, chimpreports.com