- Date submitted: 1 Nov 2011
- Stakeholder type: Major Group
- Submission Document: Download
- Additional Document:
We farmers from the Ugandan Farmers Federation (UNFFE) wish to propose the following as approaches to revamping agriculture and animal production, and hope you will consider them for inclusion in Greening the Economy with Agriculture. They reflect our inputs into Rio+20.
A. CROP PRODUCTION
(i) Provision of good quality seeds and planting materials. Support should be extended to the seed companies in developing countries to enable them multiply adequate quantities and quality of seed.
(ii) Promotion of fertilizer use in areas with low soil fertility. There is a need to repackage fertilizers in quantities that suit small holder farmers and are hence affordable.
(iii) Enhancing mechanisation, particularly tractorisation. Individual farmers as well as farmer groups that are eager to procure tractors should get government support to acquire them. This will go a long way in alleviating the labour shortages for land preparation.
(iv) Ensuring provision of good quality agro-chemicals. Governments should intensify the fight against poor quality agro-chemicals by strengthening the inspection services.
(v) Promotion of value addition. Appropriate arrangements be put in place to enable organised farmer groups to access the agro-processing funds designated for the sub-counties. Maize Shellers, Rice Hullers and Cassava Mills should be given priority.
(vi) Climate Change mitigation and adaptation. Special attention needs to be put to mitigating the bad effects of Climate Change and addressing all possible adaptation measures. Water harvesting techniques should be given emphasis and sizeable investment should be put into promoting irrigation. Government should also put up more weather stations, preferably automatic ones, to facilitate dissemination of more reliable weather information to the farmers to enable them plant in time.
(vii) Improvement in the marketing system. Farmers should be encouraged and supported to market collectively, use good storage facilities, and national and regional commodity exchanges. Where necessary, government could consider intervening in the market, particularly whenever there are bumper harvests so that farmers are not discouraged from producing during the following season.
B. ANIMAL PRODUCTION
(i) Provision of high quality livestock breeds. The need for high quality livestock breeds cannot be overemphasized. Farmers should be assisted to acquire good breeds.
(ii) Provision of livestock feeds and water. Shortage of livestock feeds, and the quality of the feeds leaves much to be desired. Deliberate efforts should be made to encourage and support livestock feed companies to increase production and stay in the business. There is also need to invest in grass and legume seeds for pasture improvement. Water capture methods are essential, to ensure livestock water.
Further, emphasis should be put on programmes designed to control invasive weeds that destroy pastures and grazing land. Such invasive weeds include Lantana camara (kapanga) which not only destroys pastures but harbours tsetse flies and is poisonous to the animals.
(iii) Animal diseases control. Farmers? ability to control animal diseases is still limited by hindrances to access drugs such as de-wormers, acaricides and vaccines, particularly the ones for poultry. Some of the drugs are either not readily available within the vicinity of the farmers or they are too expensive. Support should be extended to the local stockists and the Veterinary Staff in the field are facilitated to respond to the farmers needs.
(iv) Value addition. It is necessary to set up chilling and processing facilities. Groups/cooperatives should be encouraged to enable market access with some bargaining power. Further, it is very important that government puts in place strong law enforcement machinery to promote good hygiene during transportation of milk from the farms to the collecting/marketing centres.
(i) Capture Fisheries. It is important to promote good fishing practices through enforcing the necessary laws and regulations which include the following:
a) using the right fishing gear b) using the appropriate fishing boats c) limiting the number of boats allowed to fish on a given Lake d) strengthening the capacity and operation of the Beach Management Units
Possibilities of stocking water bodies such as big swamps and valley dams should be explored.
(ii) Fish farming. This should be promoted and willing farmers should be assisted in digging the ponds. Besides, fish fries (fingerlings) breeding centres should be set up.