The Minister of State for Animal Industry, Bright Rwamirama yesterday commissioned a liquid nitrogen plant in Mbarara.
The plant worth Shs 700 million was procured under the National Genetic Resources Centre & Data bank (NAGRC&DB) from the Noblegen cryogenics, UK to boost breeding, production and animal identification services in the country.
Liquid nitrogen is used to preserve animal germplasm- mainly semen and embryos and to preserve other materials for medical and agricultural research.
According to the ministry, currently NAGRC&DB has three functional liquid nitrogen plants, one at Entebbe, another one at Njeru Stock farm and the new one in Mbarara.
Officials said the three plants have a combined capacity to produce sufficient liquid nitrogen required for breeding, production, freeze branding and other biotechnology work in Uganda and beyond.
Rwamirama revealed that the plant installed yesterday will be able to produce 150 litres of liquid nitrogen per hour and will produce over 4,500 litres per month which will be sold cheaply to the farmers.
He noted that the plant will adequately supply liquid nitrogen to the districts of: Lyantonde, Kiruhura, Mbarara, Isingiro, Kazo, Ibanda, Kitagwenda, Sheema, Bushenyi, Buhweju, Mitooma, Rubirizi, Ntungamo, Rukungiri, Kanungu, Kabale, Rukiga, Rubanda, Kisoro and other districts in the western zones of the cattle corridor.
Rwamirama said Uganda now has capacity to produce 54,000 litres of liquid nitrogen per month.