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Operation Wealth Creation Distributes 98m Coffee Seedlings

The European Union is the biggest consumer of Ugandas coffee. Uganda also exports coffee beans to Sudan, United States, India, Russia, Vietnam, Kenya, Switzerland, Singapore and South Africa among other countries with Robusta accounting for 70 percent of Ugandas coffee exports.
22 Apr 2016 13:38
MP Mathias Kasamba shows how a coffee variety called ELITE looks like at just four years.

Audio 3

Uganda Peoples Defense Forces- UPDF has distributed 98 million coffee seedlings to farmers in the country as part of a campaign to increase coffee production and export under Operation Wealth Creation.

Maj Gen Julius Oketta, the deputy chairman of Operation Wealth Creation says the distribution of the elite coffee variety, will enable Uganda achieve the target of increasing coffee exports from the current 4 million 60-Kilogramme bags to 20 million bags annually.

The European Union is the biggest consumer of Uganda's coffee. Uganda also exports coffee beans to Sudan, United States, India, Russia, Vietnam, Kenya, Switzerland, Singapore and South Africa among other countries with Robusta accounting for 70 percent of Uganda's coffee exports.

Oketta explains that coffee production can improve the incomes of most Ugandans. He says to ensure good quality of coffee seedlings is distributed; they have contacted National Agricultural Research -Organization –NARO and Uganda Grain Council to verify them before distribution.

Oketta adds that UPDF has deployed agricultural experts to advise farmers on how best to plant the coffee seedling to ensure that they do not wither.

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Farmers in Masaka, Rakai, Bukomansimbi, Kalungu and Lwengo have received over 100 coffee seedlings each as the rain season kicks off. The five districts are the biggest coffee producers in greater Masaka region.

Joseph Mugerwa, a farmer in Mayanja village in Kakuuto Sub County says he has so far planted two acres of coffee and hopes to get 20million Shillings annually when he starts harvesting in the next six years.

Yakaya Walakira, an official from Uganda Coffee Development Authority  in charge of Rakai district is optimistic that coffee production will increase over the next five years if all beneficiaries follow the expert advise offered.

Walakira explains that with the entrance of China into coffee consumers, Uganda is guaranteed of a ready market in Asia.

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Robert Ssentamu, the greater Masaka region coordinator Uganda Coffee Development Authority assures farmers that elite variety is able to resist bacterial wilt. He says he is sure in the next five years; the wilt disease will be no more if farmers embrace the mitigation methods they teach them.