National Forestry Resources Research Institute


We are one of the 16 public National Agricultural Research Institutes (NARIs) under the policy guidance and co-ordination of the National Agricultural Research Organisation (NARO) which was established under the National Agriculture Research Act of 2005. NaFIRRI headquarters are located along plots 39-45, Nile Crescent Avenue & Plots 28-32, Oboja road in Jinja opposite the wagon ferry terminal while the Aquaculture Research and Development Centre is located at Kajjansi, 12km along Kampala-Entebbe Highway.

NaFORRI is located in Kifu, 12km along Mukono-Kayunga road.


Coming soon…


To conduct basic and applied research of national and strategic importance in Aquaculture, Capture fisheries, Water environment, Socio-economics and Marketing, and Information Communication Management, and emerging issues in the fisheries sector.

Core Values



Kifu, 12km along Mukono – Kayunga road.

Mode of Operation

We conduct forestry research through strategic partnerships with research and development organizations including Universities and other tertiary institutes, the private sector, central and local government, statutory authorities and farmer communities.

Research at the Institute is conducted is conducted through four (4) strategic research programs, namely;

  1. Agroforestry Research Program
  2. Forest Conservation and Management Research Program
  3. Forest Products and Services Research Program
  4. Tree improvement and management program

NaFORRI’s work at a glance

  • The Institute has made great strides in ensuring sustainable wood supply in Uganda by contributing in supplying quality seedlings of fast growing tree species e.g clonal eucalyptus, Pinus carribea, Melia volkensii, Olea welwitschii (Elgon teak).
  • NaFORRI has also contributed to availing quality seedlings for some of the highly demanded medicinal tree species such as Warbugia ugandensis, Prunus africana and Kigelia africana.
  • In a bid to curb deforestation and mitigate climate change effects, NaFORRI has developed technologies that improve wood recovery through efficient wood waste utilization. Various products have thus been developed from wood waste such as fuel lighters from saw dust and glulam furniture from timber offcuts.
  • Furthermore, NaFORRI has conducted research on renewable energy technologies geared towards reducing deforestation. Some of the products generated include energy saving cook stoves, charcoal and briquettes from wood waste and biodiesel from selected energy crops.
  • NaFORRI is also exploring the potential of various bamboo species for the furniture, construction and energy industry as well as for forest restoration and mitigation of climate change effects. This is premised on the fact that bamboo is a fast-growing plant and that bamboo species have physical and mechanical qualities comparable to those of woody species. Hence, various products have been produced including bamboo fuel, assorted kitchen ware and other artisan furniture.
  • NaFORRI’s successful intervention of using biological agents to control tree pests and diseases has given hope to hundreds of commercial Eucalyptus farmers who were losing their trees and livelihood. The invasion of exotic pests on the commercial tree growing scene in 2014, created uncertainty for tree growers. Before intervention, the devastating pests such as blue gum chalcid, Red gum Lerp psyllid and Bronze bug were wiping out Eucalyptus trees in Uganda estimated at 50,000 ha, and pausing a likely loss of 1.75 trillion shillings in revenue.
  • Drylands in Uganda suffer the worst consequences of climate change. In order to mitigate climate change effects and improve soil productivity in drylands, NaFORRI spearheaded research on some of the suitable tree species for dryland afforestation in Uganda. So far, seven tree species have been deemed suitable for dryland afforestation: Melia volkensii (UG and KE varieties), Terminalia brownii, Gmelina arborea, Grevillea robusta, Eucalyptus clones (GC 550, GC 796).
  • In a bid to improve nutritional security in Uganda, NaFORRI conducts research on various fruit trees including Avocado, Guava, Cashew nut, Mangoes, Annona, and Jackfruit. Currently, the institute is producing quality improved seedlings for Hass avocado, Cashew nut, Annona and Citrus. Although these are grown on a commercial scale, NaFORRI targets the uptake of these technologies for small holder farmers as part of on-farm forestry.
  • Additionally, NaFORRI is exploring the potential of some of the non-wood forest products to contribute to food and health security. This includes bio-prospecting of medicinal tree species for the nutra-ceutical and pharmaceutical industries.


The Institute is headed by the Director of Research who reports to the Director General. The Director of Research is assisted by four Program Leaders and heads of units to run the Institute. Supervision of the institute is done by the Advisory Committee of the institute.

Focus Areas of Research

In its current operations, NaFIRRI has consolidated its research under four major Research Programmes: Aquaculture and Fish Bioscience, Capture Fisheries and Biodiversity Management, Fish Habitat Management, Innovations and Post-harvest Fisheries Research.

Capture Fisheries and Biodiversity Conservation Program is headed by Mr. Mark Olukotum while Fish Habitat Management Program by Dr. William Okello, Fish Bio-science and Aquaculture Program is led by Dr. Victoria Namulawa While Innovations and Post- harvest fisheries Program by Dr. Gertrude Atukunda.

Research Programmes

1. Capture Fisheries and Biodiversity Management

Research activities under the program focuses on:

a) Fish biology studies
b) Catch Assessment Surveys and Fisheries Frame Surveys
c) Bottom trawl & hydro acoustics studies
d) Seed production, breeding and nursery areas for tilapia, Nile perch, Mukene, Semutundu and Kisinja
e) Fish stock dynamics and harvest technologies for recovery of Nile perch

2. Fish Habitat Management

Research focuses on:

a) Environmental (water quality) and socio-economic factors that facilitate fish production
b) Water weeds (water hyacinth, salvinia)
c) Limnology & planktons sampling

3. Innovations and post-harvest fisheries

a) Livelihoods and innovations
b) Markets and cost-benefits analyses of fisheries and aquaculture enterprises
c) Technologies for value-added fisheries products
d) Dissemination through ICT and linkages to reduce cost of service delivery

4. Aquaculture and Fish biosciences program is structured into four broad research flagships below:

i) Aquatic Animal Health and Bio-security Management
ii) Production System Design and Management
iii) Fish Feed Development and Management
iv) Genetic Improvement & Seed Multiplication

The Center develops and disseminates aquaculture research technologies, through different research platforms, namely:

Aquatic animal health management, fish biosafety & biosecurity

a. Detection and treatment of fish diseases

b. Design monitoring tools to avoid or prevent occurrence of diseases on fish farms and in cage culture systems

Fish feed development and management; (Research focus)

a. Formulation and development of quality least-cost and environmentally responsive fish feed from locally available ingredients

b. Development of farmer guidelines for best management protocols/guides for formulated feed

c. Technical support to feed producers

Fish seed genetic improvement, breeding and multiplication; (Research focus)

a. Selective breeding of strains with characteristics desirable to consumers (e.g. fast growth, resistance to disease) of Tilapia, African catfish and other species of high value using conventional and molecular techniques

b. Generating techniques and procedures for quality seed and brood-stock production

Aquaculture production systems design and management; (Research focus)

a. Designing appropriate fish culture production systems

b. Designing best aquaculture management guidelines for different production systems

Social economic and sociological aspects in aquaculture, value addition, marketing & information management (Research focus)

a. Technology dissemination and promotion, budget enterprise formation, market dynamics and value addition

Employment Policy

At NaFIRRI employment is founded on sustainable work environment founded on dignity and respect for all employees; cultivating the full potential of all employees; encouraging individual pursuit of work/life balance; mentoring great scientists and other professionals at all levels, who excel at research work; appreciating and recognizing the contributions of people who work with us; establishing and communicating standards for ethical behaviour and integrity; getting involved in community endeavours and public policy and lastly we are an equal opportunity employer.

Internship Programs

NaFIRRI has a vibrant Internship program in which it proactively attracts, identifies and engages talent early to mould them into young scientists and other professionals. NaFIRRI has strategic partnerships with different education institutions both medium and higher. In conclusion, undergraduates seeking meaningful internships are always welcome, they will receive guidance and support in their career growth. NaFIRRI recognizes that a great deal can be achieved for both students and NaFIRRI if the internship is positively carried out from start.

Student Mentorship/Volunteering

NaFIRRI has a strong mentoring and volunteering program given that the Institute has very experienced staff that has been out working for some time. NaFIRRI realizes mentoring and volunteering helps young people to grow and learn more, raise their self-esteem and helps them have better attitude towards work.

Partnerships and Collaborations

NaFIRRI collaborates with other NARO PARIs especially for post-harvest fisheries research and laboratory analysis, on sharing aquaculture research information. Non-NARO collaborators include: the Department of Fisheries Resources (DFiR) through joint research and information sharing, the Lake Victoria Fisheries Organization (LVFO) through information sharing and research on Lake Victoria, Makerere University (MUK) through joint research, publications and journals, Directorate of Water (Resources Management) (DWRM) through joint research on water environment, the National Water and Sewerage Corporation (NWSC) through joint research on water environment , the National Wetlands Inspection Department (NWID) through joint research on wetlands, National Environment Management Authority (NEMA) through research on water environment, Uganda Fish Processors and Exporters Association (UFPEA) for information sharing and Uganda National Council of Science and Technology (UNCST) which funds some research.

Regional collaborators like Kenya Marine Fisheries Research Institute (KMFRI), and the Tanzania Fisheries Research Institute (TAFIRI), Lake Victoria Basin Commission (LVBC), Egerton University, Njoro, Kenya through joint research while Lake Victoria Environmental Management Project (LVEMP II), Lake Victoria Research Initiative (VicRes) of the Inter University Council of East Africa (IUCEA) and Association for Strengthening Agricultural Research in Eastern and Central Africa (ASARECA) the collaboration is through supporting research activities.
International collaborators such as the Research4Life, McGill University (Canada), National Geographic Society, Toronto Zoo (Canada) Universities of Florida and Boston, Auburn University (USA) and World Fish Centre for research collaboration, E-journals and exchange of students.

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