Kachwekano Zonal Agricultural Research and Development Institute (KaZARDI) is located in Rubanda District in South Western Uganda. The institute is composed of three stations, Kachwekano (which is an administrative seat), Kalengyere and Bugongi (which are field stations).

Kachwekano ZARDI spearheads agricultural research and development work in Uganda’s south western highlands agro-ecological zone (SWHAEZ) that administratively comprises Kabale, Kisoro, Kanungu, Rukungiri, Rubanda and Rukiga districts.

Kachwekano was established by the British in 1937 for experimentation and demonstration of crops, pastures and livestock of temperate origin.


Improved livelihoods of the farming communities in SWHAEZ.


To improve farming systems and livelihoods in the SWHAEZ through conducting strategic, applied and adaptive research on priority commodities.


Integrity, Transparency, Teamwork, Adherence to work plan, Security and Political will.

Kachwekano ZARDI Journey


Kachwekano was established by the British in 1937 for experimentation and demonstration of crops, pastures and livestock of temperate origin.


Kachwekano turned into a District Farm Institute (DFI). One of the functions of the DFI was to offer practical courses in agriculture; This  equiped local chiefs with skills to disseminate technologies that increased agricultural productivity.


The DFI started popularizing local goats and sheep as a source of income for small holder farmers.


Exotic cattle breeds were introduced and up to now the region has one of the best exotic breeds in Uganda.


Kachwekano was put under the charge of National Agricultural Research Organization (NARO) as an Agricultural Research and Development Center (ARDC) to intensify agricultural research on commodities for highland agro ecological areas.


Following the enactment and operationalisation of the 2005 NAR act, Kachwekano became a semi-autonomous Public Agricultural Research Institute under NARO.


The role of the institute was also modified to conduct applied and adaptive research and to facilitate dissemination of appropriate technologies to uptake pathways.


  1. To generate and promote agricultural technologies that address needs of the SWHAEZ
  2. To develop and maintain the institute human and infrastructure capacity for effective research services
  3. To strengthen capacity of intermediary agricultural service providers (IASP) for effective dissemination/transfer of research products to target end users in the zone.
  4. To mobilize financial resources for agricultural research and development agenda for the zone.

Research Focus

The institute operates under three programme. Crop and Natural Resources Research programme, Animal Resources Research Programme and Technology Promotion and Outreach Programme.

General functions of Kachwekano

  • Generating up-to-date information that reflects research and development needs of the people and farming systems in the zone.  Such information is then used for re-designing the agricultural research agenda to cater for the dynamism in people’s interests, constraints and emerging enterprise market issues.
  • Developing technologies, practices, and tools for use by producers, processors and traders in order to continuously improve the farming systems productivity and its agro-enterprise competitiveness.
  • Building and promoting partnerships with other NARO institutes, CBO’s, local government and private sector organizations for generating and implementing research agenda with the purpose of enhancing quick technology development, adoption and dissemination.
  • Production of foundation “seed” (planting and stocking materials) of priority crop types, varieties and livestock species.
  • Promotion, through uptake pathways (e. g NAADS, conventional extension, NGOs, CBO’s) of proven technologies and research products.
  • Development of multi-stakeholder innovation platforms on various technologies in the zone.

Commercial Potato Varieties

  • Cream flesh color
  • Red skin color

  • Short dormancy of 90 days

  • Good table qualities and high yielding 28t/ha

  • Maturity period of 90 days

  • Good for crisping

  • Resistant to late blight disease

  • Short dormancy of 90 days
  • Maturity period of 100 days

  • Resistant to late blight disease

  • Tolerant to bacterial blight

  • Good for crisping

  • Good table qualities and high yielding 24t/ha

  • High yielding (19.6t/ha)
  • Resistant to late blight

  • High dry matter content (20.8%)

Transgenic potatoes with late blight resistance

Enhancing farmer capacity to generate clean seed

Apple production technologies

Institute Programs/Activities

KAZARDI implements her research work through three (3) programmes which include:

Crops and Natural Resources Research and Development Programme

Under this programme, work is being done on the following commodities; potatoes, temperate fruits, sorghum, rice and beans.

Animal Resources Research and Development Programme

Under this programme, work is being done on goat breeding, cattle and aquaculture.

Technology Promotion and Outreach Programme

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