By Our Reporter
Mr. Joshua Laban Musinguzi the co-founder and ED Agrofresh Ltd and also president of Youth Coalition for SDGs has urged more youths to embrace urban farming so as to hit the 1 Million youths farmers by 2030.
“We have very many youths in Kampala so can we give them alternative work that is decent?” he asked
He made these remarks during the launch of the first conference on National Empowerment and Development in commercial agriculture which is to happen between December 8 and 10.
According to the farmers database from YO Uganda Ltd, there is already 1 Million farmers of which only 100 are youths.
According to Laban, older farmers still beat the youths in number because the youths don’t understand the farming element.
He says as president of Youth Coalition for SDGs and one of the directors of Agrofresh, they are trying to interest farmers especially young people into commercial agriculture because it is their first address of money.
In order to beat the capital challenge, they are trying to have partners like Bank of Uganda, Housing finance bank, Post bank among others.
Speaking to journalists, Ms. Phiona Naigaga the Credit Analyst at Bank of Uganda said that government in partnership with commercial banks set up a loan scheme known as Agriculture Credit Facility (ACF) to support farmers in their funds challenges.
“We encourage farmers to apply for these funds through commercial banks and should they face challenges, we are ready to face them,” she explained
She also revealed that a total of Shs670Bn has so far been given to over 500 farmers through the Agriculture Credit Facility.
Mr. Lawrence Totimeh, the head of business and service delivery at Yo Uganda Ltd explained that they have partnered with different agents on the system to provide multiple services to farmers.
” What we have done is we have equiped each of the agents with smartphones to be able to constantly provide those digital services to the farmers,” he said.