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Agriculture

Masindi to host regional grain expo

Hon. Francis Musa Ecweru speaking to journalists at the launch of the 2018 Agribusiness Expo. Looking on is EAGC Country Director Dr. Rose Omaria.

MASINDI: The Eastern Africa Grain Council (EAGC) in partnership with Masindi District is launching the 8th edition of the Annual Agribusiness Expo 2018.

The Expo will run from June 22nd up to 23rd with this year’s theme, “Promotion of Quality Standards in Agribusiness for Trade, More Trade and Better Trade.

The Expo will be hosted at Masindi Demonstration Centre- Kihonda. EAGC Director, Dr. Rose Omaria noted that the 2018 Agribusiness Expo would enable EAGC and her partners to send out a clear and significant message on the importance of actions to upgrade, maintain and protect the quality of our agricultural products.

Hon. Vincent Ssempijja, , visiting demo plots at
EAGC Agriculture Business Expo 2016 (FILE PHOTO)

According to Omaria, the Expo will generate solutions to the existing difficulties in accessing regional and international markets thereby provide valuable stimulus for the promotion of “Trade, More Trade and Better Trade”

EAGC has previously held very successful 7 editions of the Agribusiness expos where Farmer have been exposed to new and existing technology and financial services for agriculture; agro-processing through demonstration of equipment & machinery; new innovations, training of farmers in good agronomic practices through live crop demonstration; livestock & poultry, Apiary; Fish farming, Agro-Forestry; Networking and business relationships; Sales & purchases; Sharing knowledge & experience and creating awareness on policy issues and emerging trends in Agriculture.

Speaking at the media launch, Francis Chesang, the Chief Operating Officer, aBi Trust, one of the sponsors pointed out that their support to agribusiness is along the six value chains of Coffee, Oilseeds, Maize, Pulses, Horticulture and Dairy.

Hon. Vincent Ssempijja, the Minister of Agriculture, visits stalls at the EAGC Expo 2016 (FILE PHOTO)

“Thus our partnership with EAGC for Agribusiness Expo 2018 falls within our Value Chain Development, which focuses on addressing issues of Quality management, Good Agricultural Practices (GAPs), Post-Harvest Handling (PHH), Collective Marketing, Commercial seed production, Sanitary and Pyhto Sanitary and Entrepreneurship skills,” he explained .

The Agribusiness Expo is expected to create awareness on innovations and technologies that support in Quality Control and Aflatoxin Management in Uganda.The forum also provides an opportunity for policy dialogue for the grain stakeholders and policy makers.

Omaria said the event is timely following the launch of the gazetted East Africa Staple Foods Standards in Feb 2018 whose smooth adoption and application would lead to increased trade volumes and improved food security.

“This would see farmers accessing better and greater markets within the Region estimated at a population of 186,998,614 while consumers will be provided with safe and high quality food grain products,”she noted.

The EAGC Country Program Manager, Kiiza Kizito revealed that they invited the Prime Minister Ruhakana Rugunda as guest of honour at the Agribusiness expo in Masindi.

“And so far 3 cabinet Ministers had confirmed attendance,” he added.

Ruhakana Rugunda, Uganda’s prime minister.

Uganda National Bureau of Standards collaborates with EAGC to promote compliance to standards for quality grain for fair regional trade.

Role of EAGC

The Eastern Africa Grain Council is a regional organization with membership drawn from across the Eastern and Southern Africa. Membership is drawn from grain value chain stakeholders currently with presence in 10 countries across Africa including Burundi, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Tanzania, Zambia, Malawi, South Sudan, DRC Congo and Ethiopia. EAGC’s key products and services include promotion of structured trading system (STS) through the warehouse receipting systems (WRS), and Regional Grain Trading platform (G-Soko), Market Information Systems (MIS) offered through the Regional Agricultural Trade Intelligence Network (RATIN).

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