Team Members; Dr. Possy Mugyenyi Team Leader, Dr. Gudura Basaza, Mr. Daniel Kadobera, Ms. Jennifer Kalule Musamba and Ms. Kellen Namusisi Nyamurungi
The Need:There are high levels of food security and environmental degradation in communities tobacco is the only perennially grown cash crop. The key challenge is how to wean off households from the dependency loop on one crop. The system is complex with various incentive structures like provision of fertilizers, seeds, farming implements and guaranteed purchases by tobacco that rely on only one form of commercial crop production. This is seen mainly in areas where companies at low prices.
The Innovation: This innovation reduces household dependency on tobacco by enhancing farmers abilities to generate adequate food, and create a fora where public health and poverty eradication programmes can be promoted and scaled up. The intervention is implemented by the Centre for Tobacco Control in Africa (CTCA) in partnership with Gudie Leisure Farm. The intervention involves introducing Kroiler chicken and high yield maize as alternative enterprises to tobacco growing under the theme ‘Diversification of Income for Improved Life for tobacco dependent communities in Uganda’. The innovation will use chicken litter as manure for maize gardens and maize bran as chicken feed hence promoting a well-balanced ecosystem as well as synergy between the two enterprises.
Project Impact:The innovation improves agricultural practices and creates opportunities for businesses that can be coupled and synergize each other. The ultimate impact will be communities with diversified livelihoods breaking the monopoly and over dependence on tobacco growing, markedly improved household incomes, wealth and income security and food secure households with reduced malnutrition levels. The behavioral aspects of what it takes to change the production structure of large communities will be documented to assess approaches that are transferable. The success and methodology used for this weaning process can be replicated in other communities that dangerously depend on mono-cash cropping e.g. sugar-cane and tea growing communities and is open to other alternatives not only maize and kroiler chicken.