The Nile National Agricultural Show is one of the largest, and it is held annually. It attracts more than 200 agricultural exhibitors from different parts of the country. Jinja, August 8, 2023, was the 29th edition of the source of the Nile national agriculture show, which was organized by the Uganda National Farmers’ Federation (UNFFE) in collaboration with the Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry, and Fisheries. The agricultural show attracts more than 100,000 guests annually, making it the most-attended show in Uganda.
The show was officially opened by Mr. Paul Mwambu, Commissioner of Crop Inspection and Certification, MAAIF. On behalf of the RT Hon. Frank Tumwebaze, under the theme ‘’Fostering resilient agricultural value chains to drive agro-industrialization’’
Commissioner Mwambu welcomed all the stakeholders and participants to the show and said the event is a testament to the country’s collective commitment towards transforming our agricultural sector in Uganda and promoting development in Uganda.
He further said, we are not only celebrating the achievements of our agricultural sector in Uganda, but also the concept of the agricultural value chain enables the interconnectivity of various stakeholders involved in the production processing, and distribution of agricultural products, all of which require us to invest in modern agricultural technologies.
Agro-industrialization holds a key to unlocking the true position of our agricultural sector, it also creates employment opportunities for youth agro-industrialization reduces on the risks of post-harvesting and enhances the efficiency of our agricultural value chain.
Commissioner Paul Mwambu said it is the role of all the consumers, farmers, dealers, and politicians, to ensure that we weed out fake seeds which not only compromise food security at the national level but also may affect the quality of products we offer for sale outside the country. Through periodic joint planning and review meetings with the stakeholders, the agricultural sector would be able to review progress, see the gaps and make sure to fill them. Com Mwambu said he would be happy to see to it that these review meetings are started and would ensure to give this feedback to the Minister, “I will report to him that we committed ourselves that this is going to be implemented.’’
He further said that the creation of regionalization of shows like the Jinja Agricultural Show in northern, western, and eastern Uganda, was done many years ago and stopped. He emphasized the need for stakeholders to commit themselves to these events.
Regarding the Parish Development Model (PDM), he said we have a great opportunity. The Government of Uganda has brought agriculture down to the parish level, where farmers have access to resources and can work together creating competition amongst them, leading to growth and development and ultimately having regional balance in the country.
Women form the backbone of the agricultural sector in Uganda and contribute significantly to crop production, livestock management, and agri-business. It is not just a goal but a necessity to ensure that deliberate efforts in promoting gender equality in agriculture are encouraged and supported. “Therefore, any vision of a resilient value chain and agro-industrialization must incorporate strategies that empower women farmers as entrepreneurs.” Said, Com. Mwambu.
The government’s commitment is to support agro-processing facilities, increase access, to finance for small and medium-sized enterprises, and promote research and development. All require a collective effort from all stakeholders, this includes; government, government agencies, farmer associations, and research institutions like NARO. This fosters knowledge sharing, resource pooling, and the exchange of best practices. Farmers were also encouraged to focus on digitization for the sector’s competitiveness in the world.
He concluded by extending his gratitude to all participants who have contributed to the success of this agricultural trade show 2023. In attendance was Dr. Olaho Mukani- Chairperson of the NARO Governing Council, Susan Awino- Chairperson User’s Committee together with the committee members; Jolly Masika Kateeba and Sharon Akullo Atoo accompanied by Dr Imelda Kashaija.