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NAADS trains Farmers in avocado and macadamia farming at the Harvest Money Expo 2024

NAADS trains Farmers in avocado and macadamia farming at the Harvest Money Expo 2024

The Government of Uganda has identified the production of Hass Avocado and Macadamia as a priority intervention on account of the enormous potential the commodities offer to contribute to the agricultural sector growth under the Agro industrialization program; Household incomes, Raw materials for industry and Export revenues (grew by 315%  in 2016).

The growing demand for the commodities both domestically and internationally (The global Hass Avocado market is projected to register a Compound Annual Growth rate (CAGR) of 4.8% during the forecast period 2020-2025 (Research & Markets, July 2020). The Uganda national vegetable oil requirement is estimated at 480,000Mt with a domestic production estimated at only 80,000 MT. Hass Avocado and Macadamia with their high oil contents of 14% and 70% respectively offer a strategic solution to the current vegetable oil shortage worsened by the global crises of war in Ukraine and the Covid 19 Pandemic. Hass Avocado attracts 75% of the global market for fruits while Macadamia nut is the most expensive on the world market. Processors are the major buyers of Hass avocado both in the domestic and export market.

A baseline survey conducted in 2021 indicated Hass avocado, Macadamia and Cashew nut are Uganda’s emerging non-traditional cash crops grown by various categories of farmers in the country. In most parts of the country, the climatic and soil conditions are favorable for production of these tree crops. Estimates indicate that the crops are profitable but the profitability partly depends on the number of trees grown, the quality of the seedlings and tree management. Production of Hass started in year 2000 by small scale farmers. Currently Hass Avocado is being grown in few districts in Northern, Eastern, Western and South-western Uganda in the undermentioned districts according to the recently concluded baseline survey by NAADS; Lira; Dokolo; Apac; Kwania; Mayuge; Kayunga; Wakiso; Masaka; Mukono, Kyegegwa; Fort Portal; Kabarole; Kamwenge; Kasese; Kyenjojo, Mubende; Mityana; Nakaseke; Luwero; Mbarara; Kabale; Kanungu and other upcoming ones include Kitagwenda, Sembabule, Kiryandongo, Kagadi, Masindi, Kibaale, Kamuli, Iganga and Mbale.

The farming fratnernity of Hass avocado has grown greatly with small scale Hass avocado farmers access about 1.7 acres of land with 0.13 acres (16 trees) under Hass, Medium scale farmers access an average of about 5 acres with 3.75 acres (364 trees) under Hass, Large and very large access 51.7 and 220.5 acres, respectively with over 390 acres (45,00 trees) under Hass. Majority trees planted between 2000 and 2022 and Between 2019 and 2022, a total of 521,760 seedlings were planted on a total area of about 3,258 acres by farmers in various districts  About 81% of those planted by 2011-2020 are now in fruit production.

The baseline study production of Hass avocado is estimated about 3,864 acres to be under Hass avocado in Uganda. A total annual production was estimated at 4,656,155 kg (or 23,280,775 fruits). The yield was estimated at 10.4 kg of fruit per tree and about 1,205 kg per acre (about 6,025 fruits).  About 160 Hass avocado can be planted on one acre and starts fruiting 3-4 years after planting and yield increases for over 15 years with estimates showing that the cost of establishing and managing the crop is about UGX 3,740,000 per acre, and in the first three years one can harvest fruits worth UGX 8,300,000 making a profit of UGX 4,560,000 per acre.

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