Farmers are demanding for urgent approval of national Agro forestry strategy to ensure food production in the country.
Uganda will join the rest of the world to celebrate World Food Day under the theme: Agro forestry – a solution to diverse, resilient and sustainable food systems.
World Food Day is an International day celebrated every 16th of October world over. It’s designated as a day to review progress attained by states in advancing food production. And to map out new strategies and enact policies to address food shortages.
Farmers argued that approval of national Agro forestry strategy will secure long term financing of Agro forestry and ensure sustainable food production in the country.
“As we celebrate World Food Day, we also demand government to approve national Agro forestry strategy to ensure proper coordination of actors and secure long term financing for Agro forestry in Uganda,”Uganda National Farmers Federation Chief Executive Officer Kenneth Katungi said.
Katungi however revealed that 17million ugandans are food stressed. This is because majority of farmers in rural areas only grow food on subsistence scale making food production unsustainable.
“When you look at the status of food production, Uganda is food stressed and insecure from hunger. This is due to limited farming practices to increase food production,” Katungi said.
He noted that Uganda population has been growing above 3% over the past decade compared to the inconsistent growth of the agriculture sector which has oscillated between 1.5% to 4.3% saying this has undermined efforts to effectively provide food for the population.
“The food systems in Uganda have been subjected to number of shocks which are effects of climate change. These shock include pests and diseases, weak seed system, knowledge and skills deficiency.” Clement Okia Country Representative of Icraf said.
The effect of Covid-19 on the food chain;
He added that Covid 19 pandemic has also disrupted food supply chains and thus impacted livelihood negatively.
James Walusimbi Country Manager Vi Agro forestry noted that for many years Agro forestry has been approved potential in building resilience of good systems to climate change shocks. It has been ignored by government in addressing food shortage.
“Agro forestry contributes to increased diversified food production, improved biodiversity, sustainable ecosystems services and improved livelihood of land users,”Walusimbi said.
Over 50,000 House holds have been supported in 14 District farmers organisations through Vi Agro forestry initiative.
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