The Youth in Agribusiness Caravan is the most beautiful agricultural tour I have ever participated in. We were welcome everywhere. It was so easy and friendly for us to ask questions and shared our experience with the farmers. The tour was perfectly organized (interesting and appropriate “professional visits”, good hotels, good food apart from Baguma Restaurant in Mbarara!, nice touristic places like The Equator in Kayabwe, Kitagata hot springs, Nkugute crater lake, Kichwamba Rift valley and also Queen Elizabeth Park). I discovered a wonderful country, amazing landscapes from Mbarara to Fort portal. Every day was different, every day was surprising. I made wonderful friends in the caravan; Agaba Keneth, Phionah Kyomuhendo, Jimmy Ouni, Sharifah Najjuma, Creddy Lakot to name a few, all Agripreneurs from different regions of the country, then Brenda Namirembe, Joy Lwanga and Zurah from Action Aid Uganda and not forgetting Maik Voets and Adinda Lodders from The Netherlands.
During the farm visits, I mostly admired Keirere Greener African Agency (KEGRA) in Bushenyi District because of the diversified mixed farming practice. They have Coffee seedlings, Piggery, Passion fruit and Fishery. To me these are the simplest high profit agribusinesses a youth can invest in. It doesn’t require big piece of land. With 2 acres, you can combine all the above and realize big profits. KEGRA has proved it.
And when we visited Biglad Agritourism Subsistence Organic Farm in Kabarole district, it was a mind blowing expedition. From drafted mangoes which weigh 2kgs to a 15 by 15mtrs Ginger garden which yields output equivalent to 1 acre garden. Interesting..!!! Well, I salute Mr. Julius Bigabwa for the hard work he is doing in agribusiness. He has a collection of almost all agribusiness, livestock and crop farming. I just wonder how he manages all those things. He must be fetching a lot of money from the harvests. He has Mangoes, Oranges, Bananas, Strawberry, Ginger, tea plantation, Passion fruits, Fish ponds, Eucalyptus tree, livestock like goats, pigs, rabbits, quail birds… the list is endless.
As a coffee seedlings producer / Nursery operator, i advise all farmers in the same business to diversify with other agribusiness which realize good profits in a shorter time like; onions, green pepper, carrots and/or passion fruit growing…..we have all a lot to discover in Uganda.
Having been equipped with all the necessary skills to start passion fruit growing and piggery from the Youth Caravan organized by Agriprofocus, am venturing in it. Am now mobilizing resources to acquire more 1acre of land and establish a passion fruit orchard and intercrop with green pepper and/or onions. If there is anyone who wants to join me in this adventure, you are highly welcome.
I can’t forget to comment about the football match we had with youths from Kibinge Coffee cooperative in Bukomansimbi district though we lost 1:0. Anyway it was just a friendly match, I had taken ages without playing football. Then Fort portal evening, it was fun with the cultural dancers. I joined then for a dance but I didn’t have gas. Those young people had a lot of energy. And about GMOs, I have a different perspective from most of the people. They are not as bad as those people against them report. They have little knowledge about GMOs. This is in spite of overwhelming scientific evidence that proves that GMOs are safe to eat, and that they bring environmental benefits by making agriculture more sustainable. Unfortunately the organizers of the Policy convention didn’t bring a person who supports GMOs to also give us the benefits in them. I think they were biased.
Well, I thank the organizers of this Caravan, it was an educative and fun adventure. IT WAS WORTH IT!!!