24 February 2024

tndNews

North's First

Over 300 farmers in the north equipped with proper nursery beds set up skills

An agronomist said the soil around Northern Uganda and the entire country do not have sufficient nutrients and farmers have to learn how they can effectively supplement the nutrients for a higher yield.
Otim in gulu

Last Updated on: 9th January 2024, 06:48 pm

Gulu City I Over 300 farmers from the districts of Oyam, Lira, Kitgum, Amuru; Gulu, Nwoya and Gulu City underwent a skilling program on proper setting up and management of nursery beds. The program was implemented by Syngenta Vegetable Seed.

According to Pascal Kahesi, the Country Support Manager, of Syngenta Vegetable Seed, the farmers have been taken through modern technological skills to enable them to increase their productivity.

Kahesi said this is a very important skilling initiative that will see farmers transition from the rudimentary system of farming to modern technology for higher productivity.

“We are here to help grassroots farmers learn how they can produce high-quality products and increase their productivity,” she said.

He, however, said that this program will help farmers appreciate modern technology in farming but also forget to integrate both inorganic and organic farming components for better yields.

He further explained that research conducted jointly by Syngenta and its partners indicates that 80 per cent of vegetable farmers lose 40 per cent of the seeds purchased from distributors and agro-shops at the raising stages.

Florence Lukwero, a vegetable farmer in Alero sub-county, Nwoya district told tndNews that the training came timely since she has so much interest in vegetable farming. She did not know where to start from.

Farmers

Lukwero said that she had earlier reaped big when she planted 500 stems of egg plants which enabled her to pay school fees for her children.

Also read: The future of Africa’s agriculture is gender 

“I supplement my teaching profession with vegetable farming. Last season, I planted 500 stems of eggplants and it really helped me to pay the school fees of my children since you know how we (teachers) are paid,” Lukwero told tndNews.

Julius Otim, an agronomist and a trainer with Syngenta appeals to the trainees to be ambassadors of modern farming technology since they have acquired the recommended skills.

“Our soil no longer has the nutrients it used to have, but you have to learn how you can supplement the soil nutrients with modern technology; I implore you to take these skills of proper handling of the chemicals and choices of what you want to add to your soil,” Otim said.

Samuel Otto, a farmer from Owalo sub-county in Gulu district also told this digital publication that with the skills and knowledge acquired from the training, he believes that his yields will definitely improve.

Also read: From orchard to innovation: Chucks Foods’ pioneering journey in transforming Ugandan lemons

Otto added that he used not to know much about how to prepare a nursery bed to the process of transplanting a seed from the nursery bed, but he has gotten the knowledge through this training.

“When I go back, I will earn big, now that I know the process of nursery bed preparation and handling up to transplanting which were the skills I did not have before; thanks to Syngenta,” Otto noted.

However, Ricky Olara, 26, a resident of Lacor Centre in Gulu City said he has never done any vegetable farming but when he attended the training, he got inspired to open an acre.

Olara said that he has understood how he can select good seeds, prepare his nursery beds, transplant and water the vegetable crops and hopes to reap big from the one-acre farm he plans to open.

The training is being conducted under the Northern Uganda Horticulture Market Acceleration Program (NU-HORTIMAP) implemented by Syngenta with support from Agribusiness Initiative (a B i) and TechnoServe to enable farmers transit from the rudimentary system of farming to modern technology for higher productivity.

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