Roughly 85 percent of Ugandans earn their income from farming, but the country’s agriculture sector has been plagued by poor economic support and output. The sector contributes less than 20 percent of the country’s gross domestic product, and less than 10 percent of lending goes to agriculture. Overall, the sector is dominated by smallholder farmers producing poor-quality produce, a trend that is most obvious in East Africa. The Feed the Future Uganda Commodity Production and Marketing Activity works within this context to reduce poverty by increasing the quality and quantity of smallholder crops.
In collaboration with the government of Uganda, the activity focuses on strengthening the maize, bean, and coffee value chains using several main strategies. First, the program aims to boost crop productivity. Second, it is working to make support services for farmers more accessible and more effective. Third, to boost economic output, the activity is strengthening inter-actor relationships for more effective movement of products and information between buyers and sellers and promoting access to competitive markets. Finally, by facilitating ties between traders and other private sector actors, the program helps encourage farmers to respond to market demands.
This activity is one of several USAID Feed the Future programs in Uganda; other efforts focus on the enabling environment for agriculture and agricultural inputs. With this systematic approach, the Uganda Commodity Production and Marketing Activity aims to use improved domestic production to grow the export market, ultimately increasing smallholder farmers’ incomes.
In addition to the goals described above, the activity will strive to achieve the following results:
- 50 percent average increase in incomes of target populations
- 100 percent increase in value and volume of exports (maize and coffee)
- Increase in exportable maize from 250,000 metric tons to 600,000 metric tons
- 50 percent increase in average national bean yields