The first annual machine exhibition in Uganda will help farmers access various modern farming equipment that can be used to add value in the entire agricultural chain, organisers have said.
Addressing journalists in Kampala, Promote Uganda Limited Director, David Nsubuga said there are many opportunities especially in the agricultural sector in Uganda but they are not being fully utilized partly because of lack of modern equipment.
“In the agricultural sector, many of the farmers are constrained by the tools they use. There are so many technological gaps that if addressed can see a boost in our agricultural products,”Nsubuga said.
He explained that agriculture is mainly practiced in rural areas but the youths have abandoned these areas to look for better employment opportunities in urban areas, a thing he said has cost the sector greatly.
“If the elderly farmers in rural areas carrying out agriculture can get easy to use modern equipment that can help them in preparing the farms, planting seeds, maintaining the gardens, harvesting, post-harvesting and packaging of the agricultural products, this will greatly improve the sector through value addition,”Nsubuga noted.
According to the Promote Uganda Director, government should put in place avenues that will enable farmers get access to modern farming equipment as a way of adding value on the products.
“The way government gives them (farmers) seeds through operation wealth creation and NAADS should be the same way they are assisted to enable them buy modern farming equipment,” he said.
“These are equipment that can help them carry out agriculture right from preparing the gardens to the packaging of the products after adding value onto them. They can give loans to farmers but also reduce on taxes so that many people can be able to buy them”
Nsubuga said through the annual machine exhibition set for November 12 to 16 at the UMA showground in Lugogo, they will be able to display various modern farming equipment that are affordable to Ugandans farmers but can do a good job.
“We shall also organized a series of outreaches in various parts of the country so that farmers get to know the modern equipment and see how they can access them as one of the ways of modernizing agriculture.”
He revealed that they are in talks with the National Agricultural Research Organisation(NARO) to see that the equipment can be stationed at their(NARO) centres throughout the country for the farmers to access.
“All this aligns with government’s efforts to ensure value addition on agricultural products before being exported.”