MAAIF Celebrating 36 Years of NRM Leadership

MAAIF Celebrating 36 Years of NRM Leadership


The Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industries and Fisheries (MAAIF) congratulates the President of Uganda, HE. Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, NRM and the General Public on the celebration of the 36th NRM Liberation Day.

And to all those that sacrifised and contributed to the struggle that liberated this NATION.

We honour and salute you.


Agriculture the key to agro-industrialisation remains one of the largest sectors of the economy employing more than 64% of the working population, contributes approximately 25% to Uganda’s GDP (Uganda Bureau of Statistics, 2020), employs over 70% of the households and accounts for 31% of our country total exports (Bank of Uganda Statistics, 2020).

There has been steady progress in production of agricultural commodities over the past 36 years. Agriculture provides a significant proportion of the raw materials for the processing and manufacturing sectors.

H.E the President identified 13 key challenges impeding agriculture transformation in Uganda. These include: Low commercial agricultural levels; Lack of linkage between research and farmers; Low use of fertilizers; Low coverage of irrigation; Land fragmentation; Low level of value addition; High cost of finance; Lack of agricultural machinery; Vector and diseases; Poor transport network; Lack of Farmers organization/co-operatives; Lack of storage facilities especially at homesteads/community levels and  Illegal  Fisheries.

Accordingly, government through the Ministry of Agriculture, animal Industry and fisheries embraced the  Agro-Industrialisation programme which seeks to holistically  address the above challenges. Ministry interventions have focused on: enhancing agricultural production and productivity; establishing storage infrastructure and post-harvest handling facilities; value addition; improving market access and increasing competitiveness of agro-based products in domestic, regional and international markets; advocating and lobbying for increased access to agricultural financial services and critical inputs;

2.0 Progress over the years

Following the implementation strategy as highlighted above, the agricultural sector performance over the NRM period has been as follows: The total value of Ugandan agricultural exports amounted to US$491.1 million in 1996.

2.1 Crop production, export and revenue figures

2.1.1  Coffee

Coffee production increased from approximately 2.3m 60-kg bags in 1986 to 7.75m 60-kg bags in 2021. Export earnings increased from $125.3m to $718.57m in the same period.


Government continues to implement its strategy of ensuring increased tea production in the traditional tea growing areas and in the new ones. The production of tea increased from 3,334 MT out of which 2,792 MT  were exported fetching USD 3.4m in 1986 , to 78,030 MT out of which 70,201 MT worth USD. 91.7Millions were exported. The production has stimulated establishment of new tea factories which now stand at 33 factories creating employment and increase household income.

Production of leaf in some districts has overtaken the existing tea processing capacities, as is the case of Kyenjojo, Kabarole, Kanungu and Buhweju. In addition, 15 new tea factories are being established and are at different levels in several districts including; Kyenjojo (2), Buhweju (4), Kanungu (1), Bushenyi (1), Rukiga (1), Kisoro (1), Ntungamo (1), Kamwenge (1), Mbarara (1) and Luwero (1).


Government has invested in cocoa production which has led to its increased production from 1,000 MT in 1986 to 35,318MT in the FY 2019/20 valued at USD 89.9 million. The increase in production volumes is attributed to Governments interventions in continuous supply of Cocoa seedlings to both small holder and commercial farmers in district local governments that prioritize cocoa production


The country has continued to promote cotton production in order to sustain the country’s textile industries and for export of yarn.  Cotton production increased from 20,267 bales worth USD 5.7M in the late 80s to 173,457 Bales  in 2020 worth USDUGX 114 Bn. Cotton production has contributed over Sh. 994 billion to household incomes and USD 654 million in lint exports over the last 20 years.

Currently the total installed ginning capacity stands at over 900,000 bales annually. Uganda currently has six cotton wool manufacturing firms produce absorbent surgical cotton wool and Mama Kits from locally grown cotton. These produce over 700 Mt of surgical cotton wool annually. The factories produce a combined total of over 2,000 Mt of edible oil and approximately 12,000 Mt of cotton seed cake used in animal feeds annually.

Oil Palm

In 1986, there was no oil palm production in Uganda, the country was importing 100% of its vegetable oils. In order to reduce importation of crude palm oil, government started oil palm production in Kalangala district. Currently, the country produces over 40,005 MT of crude palm oil which saves the country over USD 23 million and fetches smaller holder farmers’ gross income of over UGX 28.2 billion.

Uganda is currently exporting commodities including Rice, Fruits, Fish and Flowers fetching over USD 168m. These were not among the exports before.

Fruits (Citrus, Mangoes, Pineapples, Apples)

Government interventions through distribution of citrus, mango, apple and pineapple seedlings and suckers has resulted into increase production and export volumes of fruits and vegetables. In the year 2020, 83,554 MT of fruits were exported fetching Uganda  USD 45.23 million. 

2.2 Livestock Subsector

  • Cattle population has increased from 4.8 million in 1986 to about 15 million in 2021
  • Uganda is among the African countries with the highest milk production growth rate, with a fast annual growth rate of 5.7%.
  • Milk production has increased from 410 million litres in 1986 to 2.7 billion litres in 2021 per year.
  • Rural milk coolers have increased from 8 in 2001 to  over 437 with a holding capacity of 1,497,900 litres
  • Processing companies have increased from one (1) in 1986 to 135 in 2021, with processing capacity of 30,000 litres and 2.8 million litres per day respectively.
  • Dairy exports increased from ……………. to USD 139.5 million in 2021

The Ministry through NAGRC&DB is promoting crossing local animals, to F1-50% and F 2-75% which can produce 12 and 18 litres of milk per day respectively. With F1 a farmer with good management gets 1.5 million Uganda shillings per animal per year.  Six Cows of 75% dairy crosses earns more than 20 million a year from milk.

NAGRC & DB has improved the beef animal’s average daily weight gain to 250 gms per day with F1- 50% and this has reduced the market age tremendously from 3-4 years to 1- 1.5 years.

Kuroiler chicken which are disease resistant and faster growth were introduced in Uganda. The Kuroiler hens’ lays between 150-200 eggs in a year compared to the 40 eggs produced by the indigenous birds. Cocks weigh between 3-4 kg within four months.  2, 305,194 were distributed to 5,500 households and 40,000 birds have been exported to the regional markets.

Early maturing pigs have been introduced where they can produce at 10 months at an estimated weigh of 80-90 kgs live weight compare to the locals one year and two months at an average weight of 40-60 Kgs. Breeds such as Comborough can produce over 14 piglets (28 piglets/animal/year) and at UGX 150,000 translates into 4,200,000/= per sow/year.

2.3 Fisheries

Fish stocks and fish catches increased from 307,149 MT in the FY 2018/19 to 603,220 MT in 2020. In addition, aquaculture continued to grow with an estimated total production of 120,000MT from 5,000 cages and 25,000 fish ponds from an estimated 20,000 fish farmers. The performance has been a result of government focus on gazetting of fish breeding grounds, enforcement of fisheries laws and regulations, provision of quality fingerlings and fish feed and providing an enabling environment for private sector to invest in aquaculture.

The availability of raw material (fish) sustained operations of the 12 fish processing factories which ultimately increased the  volume and value of exported fish from 14,894 MT valued at$37,048   to USD 227 million by 2020.


3.1 Research

In order to increase agricultural production and productivity, government through NARO intensified Agricultural research which led to introduction of new crop varieties with attributes of early maturity, drought tolerant and disease resilient especially beans, maize and rice. Considering the importance of research, government has invested in the construction, rehabilitating and equipping of research facilities at research centres including; Namulonge, Serere, Nabuin, Kamenyamigo, Rwebitaba, Kyembogo, Hoima ( Bulindi), Kachekano and  Ngetta.

Under Animal genetics, the National Animal Genetics Resource Centre and Data Bank (NAGRC&DB) installed a new a nitrogen plant with capacity to produce 89 litres per hour and a hatchery with capacity of 13,000 chicks per week. More farmers started rearing the resilient Kuroiler birds. There is notable genetic improvement in the country and productivity is seen in milk and beef production.

A number of technologies released in the last two decades include: banana variety M2 which yields 86 MT per hectareper year, resistant to Black Sigatoka and tolerant to weevils and nematodes.

3.2 Control of pests, vectors and Diseases

  1. The country experienced many new diseases and pest problems in the last three decades; key among these include; Fall army worm, Desert Locusts, Maize lethal Necrosis, Banana wilt diseases. Government managed to contain all these pests’ outbreaks through conducting control operations. For the recent Desert Locusts, our UPDF played a key role to contain the Desert locusts and their ability to destroy crops and vegetation/grasses for animals.
  • Government reduced the damage of fall army worm from >70%  at its peak in 2016 to <5% currently, black coffee twig borer from 32% to 17.8%, coffee berry disease from 19.6% to 12,4%, cassava brown streak from >24 to 17.5%. In addition, Banana Bacterial Wilt (BBW) disease has been maintained under control, with the current incidence at <3% in banana producing regions.
  • Government has started the process of manufacturing vaccines for diseases of economic importance, notably FMD and anti-tick. Government through NARO has established a National FMD vaccine evaluation platform to support the country in evaluation of imported FMD vaccines before they are used in the country to strengthen the effectiveness of control of FMD virus.

3.3 Water for agriculture production,

  1. Government has continued its effort to invest and improve access to water for production. Currently, construction of six (6) irrigation schemes of Wadelai, Torchi, Mobuku ll, Doho ll, Ngenge and Rwengaaju are being finalised. In addition, construction of more irrigation schemes including Acomai in sironko and Atari in kween/bulambuli has started.
  • In addition, government has supported farmers/farmer groups by installing solar powered irrigation systems in 35 sites including; Ntungamo, Hoima, Mubende, Kamuli, Koboko, Kumi, Kabale, Mukono, Kiboga, Buvuma, Sembabule, Kayunga, Yumbe Kaberamaido, Kaliro, Buikwe, Butebo, Masindi, Mubende, Butambala, Bukomansimbi, Kapchorwa, Iganda, kaabong,Rukungiri,Amolar, Adjumani, Mbale, Pader, Rukungiri, Rukiga, Nakaseke and Katakwi districts in order to promote adoption of improved and efficient water for agricultural production technologies for both crops & livestock.
  • In order to address the challenge of water for animals especially in the cattle corridor and drought prone districts, government has constructed over 1555 valley tanks with a total holding capacity of 10,840,000 m3. This implies water for livestock storage capacity increased to 15.04 million m3.

3.4 Promotion of Agricultural Mechanization

  1. Government has procured and distributed 325 tractors and matching implements to 115 District Local Governments. The Ministry piloted provision of tractor hire services using 16 tractors and implements for hire at a subsidized rate. These tractors and implements are accessed at the subsidized hire rate of Ugx 40,000 per acre for ploughing, harrowing and spraying, as compared with Ugx 120,000 per Acre charged by the private equipment owners.  Equally, access to heavy earth moving equipment is subsidized. The government rate is Ugx 480,000 per acre compared to Ugx 1,200,000 per Acre charged by the private sector
  • This has greatly supported rice, coffee, maize, cotton, sunflower, pasture, beans and cassava growing households. The heavy equipment units have also been able to support the development and construction of the water storage facilities (valley tanks, dams, channels, fish ponds) and currently there are over 1555 facilities constructed and desilted country wide as well as opening farm access roads.
  • Government has started the rehabilitation and equipping of the Namalere National Referral Agricultural Mechanization Center to serve as Center of Excellency for skilling, training, upgrading and accreditation of the equipment and machinery operators, mechanics and technicians. This is in addition to constructing five Zonal agricultural mechanization Centers of Mbale, Kiryadongo, Bushenyi, Agwata and Buwama out of the 18 planned Centres country wide.

3.5 Post-harvest handling, value addition, Agro-processing and Marketing

  1. Government has intensified Support to Agricultural Value Chains Development, where, Medium scale fruit processing equipment have been distributed and installed in Yumbe for Mango with processing capacity of 5 MT/hour; Kayunga for Pineapple with processing capacity of 600kgs/hour; Nwoya Multi-Fruit factory with processing capacity of 12 MT/Hr and Kapeeka Multi Fruit processing plant with processing capacity of 5MT/hr.
  2. In the dairy sub-sector, increased milk production has seen emergence of new dairy factories and milk processing plants. The country has increased processing of dairy products including; milk powder; ghee, butter; UHT milk; casein; whey protein concentrate; pasteurized milk; yoghurt, cream, ice cream and cheese both for exports and local consumption. These were attained through the NRM strategic interventions of adopting improved dairy breeds, provision of improved pasture seeds, skilling dairy farmers in good dairy farming practices and deliberate efforts to attract dairy investors.
  3. In order to boost sugarcane production for both the domestic and export markets the government has supported the Atiak Sugar production plant. This has demonstrated development of the sugar cane value chain through a direct link between production and processing of sugarcane.
  4. The storage facilities have an aggregated total storage capacity of 33,497 million. The conducive environment provided by Government to the Uganda Grain Council has resulted to an increase in the grain storage capacity from to 750,000MT in 2020.
  5. To further strengthen the regulation and certification function, government introduced the online e-certification services. This initiative has reduced the interception of agricultural products due to documentation by 80% in just one year 2020.

The Ministry, strengthened enforcement of sustainable fisheries rules and regulations along the major water bodies through the Fisheries Protection Unit. Over the past 4 years, there has been a 43% increase in fish catch and in effect, resulted in the re-opening of 4 fish factories.