Coronavirus: Are Uganda’s Youth Farmers Positioned To Ensure Continued Food Security during COVID-19 Lockdown?

Uganda, which has the second-youngest population in the world, is
creating economic opportunities for youth brands in the agricultural sector.

Actually, 55 percent of youth in Uganda are engaged in the agricultural sector, and Uganda is addressing youth unemployment, in part, by creating more opportunities for rural youth to become involved in agriculture. Currently, the youth and young people constitute about 78% of Uganda’s population

In the midst of the COVID-19 lockdowns across the world, long-term
confinement orders and travel restrictions have risked causing disruptions in
agricultural production due to the unavailability of agricultural labor and
the inability to get food to markets.

Such disruptions, which include hampering the movement of agricultural
and food industry workers, result in the spoilage of perishables and increasing
of food wastage.

Agricultural experts have now called for a National Food Security
The task force that will ensure the country does not run into a food crisis amidst
this period of uncertainty and distress.

The experts are saying the issue of sustainable food production and
supply is not being addressed at the national level and this could cause
disruptions, hence posing a risk in agricultural productivity due to the
unavailability of agricultural labor and the inability to get food to markets.

Dr. Dick Kamuganga, president of the Uganda National Farmers’
Federation, has advised that a food security taskforce such as that which was
formed by the Ministry of Health to fight COVID-19, should be urgently set up
to ensure food production and supply especially for vulnerable Ugandans.

 “Having redundant youth in the community is a big problem;
they will eat all the little food their parents have and turn into a big
the problem in their communities,” Dr. Kamuganga said.

Another colleague from Uganda National Farmers’ Federation, Mr. Alex,
Mukotanyi notes that “In order to continue stabilizing food security in
Uganda, one of the areas we need to tackle more is unlocking demand, where
possible, and making sure that farmers have access to information on services,
products, among others.  

For example, this is the time for the digital platforms to help farmers access
farm inputs, pay for goods and services. People unlike before needing access to
reliable information to meet the current high demand. 

The existing digital solutions can help ensure continued access to social and economic services including the Agricultural products during the current COVID-19 lockdown. “

For instance, LK Foods and Beverages Ltd, a local Ugandan Farm to Market
Brand is unveiling an Order App where end buyers will be able to place orders
for delivery of food items to their respective homes. The food items will be
consolidated from farmers and stores.

Mr. Sam Balagadde, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) LK Food &
Beverages said that “Farmers will specifically need information on markets
linking them directly to end buyers through the digital systems. Our usual
markets will then be decongested and people’s movement minimized.

Local brands in agriculture are now expanding to interact directly with
farmers. More agribusinesses are buying and selling directly with farmers.

As Publics Africa Communications, a specialist food and agriculture PR
agency, we are passionate about farming, and the role that the industry has in
feeding the world and caring for the environment.

Our team through Publicist East Africa is committed to playing our
part in making agriculture a vibrant and successful industry.

Joseph Kanyamunyu

Joseph Kanyamunyu is the Founding Editor of the Publicist East Africa. He is a highly skilled and talented expert at PR & Brand reputation with more than fifteen years’ of demonstrated experience in brand architect & advocacy, Corporate Communications & Public Affairs, supporting multiple brands, directing communications schemes relating to various audiences, providing creative solutions that address clients’ needs in both agency and in-house settings. Proven success developing, managing and implementing media strategies and measuring results across both Digital media and traditional channels

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