By Spy Uganda
The Committee on Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries has urged government to subsidise the cost of Hass avocado and macadamia seedlings.
In a report presented by the Chairperson, Hon. Janet Okori-Moe, the Ministry of Agriculture was tasked to promote reputable partners of the crops to minimise failure and sustain the flow of inputs.
“Government should increase the budget through NAADS and local governments to increase planting materials, capacity building, storage and value addition. There is also need to mobilise support for potential farmers to undertake the project,” said Okori-Moe.
The report was presented during a plenary sitting on Tuesday, 20 June 2023 chaired by the Speaker, Anita Among followed a visit to Kenya by the committee to study the country’s progress in Hass avocado and macadamia growing and processing.
Okori-Moe urged government to set up regional nurseries and processing centres close to enable easy market access and reduce losses from the perishable items.
“Ministry of Agriculture should inspect and certify nurseries to supply seedlings and establish nucleus farms at regional level. Government should promote avocado and macadamia growing because they are on very high demand internationally,” she added.
The committee observed that avocado is one of the major tropical fruits globally with imports valued at US$6.1 billion and projected to grow at 5.7 per cent by 2027.
The macadamia market is projected to grow by 6.6 per cent between 2020 and 2025.
It further observed that many Ugandans attempting to enter into Hass avocado and macadamia growing business find it difficult to access or buy the expensive seedlings sold between Shs5,000 and Shs8,000.
According to Okori-Moe, Hass avocado and macadamia have been listed by the Ministry of Agriculture as part of the 19 high value crops to be promoted under the Agricultural Value Chain Development Programme and NDPIII.
“The committee therefore, recommends that government should promote the export market to enhance our national and international competitiveness in these crops and support producer cooperatives to promote the avocado value chain,” Okori-Moe added.