Officials from the Uganda Coffee Development Authority have revealed that the country will not be able to achieve the target of 20 million bags per year.
President Yoweri Museveni through the Office of the Prime Minister in 2014 directed UCDA to look at increasing the capacity of country’s exports for coffee to 20 million bags per year by 2020.
Speaking to journalists on Monday at the Uganda Media Centre in Kampala, Edmund Kananura, the director quality and regulatory services said that with the prevailing conditions, the target cannot be achieved.
“The current weather is unpredictable and thus the target cannot be achieved as we expected. The unpredictable weather is not only in Uganda but the entire word,”Kananura said.
“If the weather is bad it affects the way seedlings grow and maturity will also prolong.”
The official from UCDA however noted that government is working on interventions to deal with the problems that would not favour the growth of coffee seedlings and also prolong maturity.
Kananura explained that government is planing for irrigation and use of fertilisers on the young coffee plants.
“We are still following the guideline of planting 300 million trees per year to be able to realise the 20 million bags per year by 2025,”the UCDA director for quality and regulatory services noted.
According to officials, the forthcoming 14th African Fine Coffee Conference and Exhibition at the Serena hotel will bring together all stakeholders in the coffee industry in the world to discuss how to improve varieties and also increase exports.
Agricultural Business Initiative has injected two hundred million in the exhibition set for 14 to 16 February.
Uganda with two types including Robusta and Arabia is Africa’s leading exporter of coffee at 4.5 million bags per year.
If Uganda attains the goal of exporting 20 million bags per year, it will be among the top three coffee exporting countries in the world.