Family Economic Empowerment Phase 1; Located along Gayaza road our Sickle Cell family forum is working to set up a demonstration farm sitting on quarter acreage of land donated by Mrs. Winfred Lalani.
Under this project we are working with AGT Laboratories to provide disease free Banana Planting Materials. We opted for tissue culture planting material mainly because it offers pest and disease free materials; offers uniform growth which ultimately increases yield; offers early maturity of the crop; enables round year planting as seedlings can be availed all through the year; two successive ratoons are possible in a short duration minimizing cost of cultivation.
Why Banana? Bananas rank highest amongst the most important food crops in Uganda. Annual production is currently estimated at 8.45 million tons, accounting for 15% of total world banana output. In Uganda, over 7 million people including 65% of the urban population depend on the crop as their staple. It is estimated that 75% of the farmers grow the crop on 1.3 million hectares. Most of this production is for local consumption, the country having the highest consumption rate worldwide (per capita consumption 450kg).
In addition to providing food, bananas ensure income to the farmer throughout the year, play a key role in import substitution, provide soil surface cover, reduce soil erosion on steep slopes and are a principal source of mulch for maintaining soil fertility and improving penetration of water into the soil. Bananas also provide feeds for animals. Besides, there is a socio economic culture based on the banana crop. USCR choose banana with this background in mind.